Dumb Atheist Sayings
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15-05-2016, 03:23 PM
RE: Dumb Atheist Sayings
Quote:What then of the unfertilized ovum and the lucky sperm?

My sperm worships all things vaginal. I know that's anecdotal and I'm not proud of it this deification of an obviously false (yet very powerful) God.
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15-05-2016, 03:32 PM
RE: Dumb Atheist Sayings
(15-05-2016 03:23 PM)ImFred Wrote:  [quote]My sperm worships all things vaginal. I know that's anecdotal and I'm not proud of it this deification of an obviously false (yet very powerful) [strike]God[/strike] Goddess.

Fixed it for you.

I thought. Sigh.



Oh crap!
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15-05-2016, 03:37 PM
RE: Dumb Atheist Sayings
(15-05-2016 03:32 PM)jabeady Wrote:  [quote='I'mFred' pid='997287' dateline='1463347380']
Quote:My sperm worships all things vaginal. I know that's anecdotal and I'm not proud of it this deification of an obviously false (yet very powerful) [strike]God[/strike] Goddess.

Fixed it for you.

I thought. Sigh.



Oh crap!

There you go! (Just do a reply-quote to this to see how that's formatted.)
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15-05-2016, 03:42 PM
RE: Dumb Atheist Sayings
Quote:Goddess

Point taken. And believe me, I'm on my KNEES!!!
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15-05-2016, 03:42 PM
RE: Dumb Atheist Sayings
Thanks!

Oh crap!
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15-05-2016, 03:55 PM
RE: Dumb Atheist Sayings
(15-05-2016 03:14 PM)Paleophyte Wrote:  OK, since my poor little thread has gotten entirely derailed I'm just going to run with it.

As I see it, the core of this argument is the definition of what is and is not an atheist.

Let's eliminate the obvious.

Are the inanimate qualified to be atheists? Heatheness feels that my holey socks should make the grade but I'm going to disagree. True, they do not believe in god but neither do they believe or disbelieve in anything else. They haven't a thought in their perforated little souls. Including the inanimate as atheists cheapens the term. It becomes meaningless by virtue of the fact that it includes nigh on everything. I'm content with "not a theist" but don't feel that really needs stating.

What of the plants, animals, fungi and single-celled organisms? Can they lay claim to atheism? Perhaps some of the sparkier animals have their own notion of god, chickens get some odd superstitions, but I can't imagine any of them subscribing to any god that humans churned out. Again, we cheapen the term by their inclusion.

Of course, the word "atheist" only applies to humans since all the other things you mentioned cannot "have a god". You mention humans and embryos next, so stay with me here.

(15-05-2016 03:14 PM)Paleophyte Wrote:  If I was born an atheist, what was I a minute before I was born? An atheist. And a minute before that? Still an atheist. And nine months before that? Was the freshly fertilized ovum that would become me an atheist? It certainly didn't believe in god.

What then of the unfertilized ovum and the lucky sperm? Are we to consider them atheists too? Neither of them believe in god. This poses a problem though. My father was an atheist but my mother was a theist. At what point did part of her body become the atheist ovum that would become me? All of my grandparents were theists so at what point did my paternal grandparents' gametes become the atheists that my father would be?

This example is quite irrelevant because atheism is not the only thing we can't pinpoint at an exact time during the first months of a human's life.

When does the embryo acquire self-awareness? We don't know exactly. It's unclear when someone becomes a person, but that's not what matters in this argument. Bear with me, I'll explain.
What you are presenting here is in the realm of philosophy.

(15-05-2016 03:14 PM)Paleophyte Wrote:  We have arrived at an absurd answer. Biology has failed us. Precious little surprise. Atheism deals wth theology, philosophy and thought so looking to a biological process such as birth for a proper definition is going to produce some very odd results.

We don't really look at this biological process to define atheism. The argument could perfectly work with a 1 year old child. It's not the birth itself that is important in this argument.

(15-05-2016 03:14 PM)Paleophyte Wrote:  Undergroundp has the most effective definition that works well. The emphasis is mine.

(14-05-2016 02:16 PM)undergroundp Wrote:  An atheist. A person with no god.

So now we must take a trip down the rabbithole of personhood.

Is a newborn a person? My dog is disqualified from atheism by virtue of not being human. Dog does not believe in god, but dog is not an atheist. That aside, my dog displays a number of traits that the newborn lacks. It responds to it's name, learns tricks and doesn't shit on the carpet. By many benchmarks my dog is more of a person than any newborn.

If an atheist is a person, then if dog is not an atheist but dog is more person than the newborn, then the newborn has a hard time qualifying as either person or atheist. By this yardstick I would suggest that it is unreasonable to state that we are born atheists. Neither are we born theists. We are born blanks, some genetic predispositions waiting to suck up our surroundings.

A dog cannot be more person than a baby because the baby will eventually grow up and be a person, but the dog won't. And that is what is important with this argument. See my conclusion.

(15-05-2016 03:14 PM)Paleophyte Wrote:  When then do we become atheists? Hard to say since there is almost certainly no hard and fast line where we can say, "This is a person but this is not." My opinion is that we can put an upper limit on it with one of the staples of atheism, and skepticism as a whole.

Any statement made without evidence may be dismissed without evidence.

The capacity to accept or dismiss religion is sufficient to demonstrate that a person is an atheist. This capacity need not be exercised, merely present. The person need never be exposed to religion in order to think it daft if it were ever put to them. For me this represents an upper boundary and the newborn below the lower boundary. Personhood and atheism occur somewhere betwixt and between.

Just because we can't pinpoint the moment we become a person it does not mean that we are not born atheists. You do not need to know about religion to be an atheist. It is a state. A baby has no god. It cannot even grasp the concept of a god.

Now, your whole post here is ignoring the point of the argument. You keep talking about when someone becomes a person. You don't need that. The same argument could be used for a 1 year old, a 5 year old or even a 10 year old. If a 10 year old grows up in a secular environment (not taught that there is no god, but without the concept of god being present), he or she will be an atheist. No matter the genetic tendency for religion or the sense of a "higher power". If no god concept is introduced to the child, he or she will be an atheist. Even though there is a tendency for religion in our genes, there is no such tendency for a god.
That is the whole point of the argument.

And it can serve an atheist quite well. As I mentioned before, it can be used in the case of a theist claiming that babies are born with religion in them or whatever. I've heard the line so many times that it does make sense to me. Using this argument, you can demonstrate that kids cannot be born religious, since they don't even know the concept of god. They will grow up being without the concept of god unless someone teaches them otherwise; which is contrary to most theists' beliefs about their own belief.

Now, if all you meant to say was that a theist won't understand this argument, yes, I agree. You do need to elaborate on it to make it clear and the phrase cannot stand on its own.

(15-05-2016 03:22 PM)jabeady Wrote:  "If it can't be expressed in figures it's not science, it's an opinion." Lazarus Long

Your statement sounds like an opinion. At any rate, I maintain that most of us would prefer to begin the conversation at a more advanced, adult, point. Your insistence on a baby's atheism certainly hasn't helped move the conversation forward. Personally, I find discussion of adult-level atheism to be far more interesting and pertinent.

You prefer whatever you want, I don't care. The conversation itself is about atheism in babies, so if you don't like that, you can move to another part of the forum.

And no, it's not an opinion that "without a god" shows a state. Linguistics, you see.

(15-05-2016 03:22 PM)jabeady Wrote:  Your unsupported claim is probably about as good for me as my unsupported claim of degrees in English, journalism and American history, with extensive education in theology and several years' professional experience in emergency medicine and immigration law is for you.

Oops! I left out the computer programming and electronics training, and computer game reviewing. Sorry.

Oh crap!

It's unsupported, yes, although I could prove it if I cared about this particular conversation with you, but I don't. And yes, it is a claim, but it does not make my argument about the usage of the word "atheism" any weaker. My argument actually came from the Wikipedia page you cited.

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15-05-2016, 03:55 PM
RE: Dumb Atheist Sayings
I'll admit I'm not fond of the whole "we are all born atheists" argument.

We are all born unbelievers. That's really not the same. We're also not aware of color. Does that mean we don't believe in blue?

Atheism is a tag or label.

There are many people who are currently beleivers who claim to be former atheists.

Not ever attending church doesn't really make someone an atheist tho. An atheist is someone who doesn't believe that god exists -- you first have to understand and care that people do believe in god to reject the premise. Many in the "former atheist" camp don't make that assertion unless it sounds better than, "my family was never religious, we never went to church or were involved with any religion. Then I heard about the Flying Spaghetti Monster (insert any religion) and became a believer in noodles"

It pisses me off because my atheism came from a different place, where I actually studied religions and didn't want the atheist label.


But as if to knock me down, reality came around
And without so much as a mere touch, cut me into little pieces

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15-05-2016, 04:09 PM
RE: Dumb Atheist Sayings
Quote:you first have to understand and care that people do believe in god to reject the premise

I do? I feel like it's absolutely my prerogative not to give a rat's ass what anybody believes. I'm glad I never wasted my time considering whatever cockamamie belief systems passed my way.
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15-05-2016, 04:14 PM
RE: Dumb Atheist Sayings
(15-05-2016 04:09 PM)ImFred Wrote:  
Quote:you first have to understand and care that people do believe in god to reject the premise

I do? I feel like it's absolutely my prerogative not to give a rat's ass what anybody believes. I'm glad I never wasted my time considering whatever cockamamie belief systems passed my way.

In your statement you acknowledge they exist, you obviously rejected it.

Whatever. Drinking Beverage

That kinda proves the point one must be first aware of something to reject it.


But as if to knock me down, reality came around
And without so much as a mere touch, cut me into little pieces

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15-05-2016, 04:16 PM
RE: Dumb Atheist Sayings
(15-05-2016 03:55 PM)Momsurroundedbyboys Wrote:  I'll admit I'm not fond of the whole "we are all born atheists" argument.

We are all born unbelievers. That's really not the same. We're also not aware of color. Does that mean we don't believe in blue?

Atheism is a tag or label.

There are many people who are currently beleivers who claim to be former atheists.

Not ever attending church doesn't really make someone an atheist tho. An atheist is someone who doesn't believe that god exists -- you first have to understand and care that people do believe in god to reject the premise. Many in the "former atheist" camp don't make that assertion unless it sounds better than, "my family was never religious, we never went to church or were involved with any religion. Then I heard about the Flying Spaghetti Monster (insert any religion) and became a believer in noodles"

It pisses me off because my atheism came from a different place, where I actually studied religions and didn't want the atheist label.

I get what you're trying to say, but it's hard for me to attach "belief" in the word. I know it doesn't mean a lot to English speakers, but for me it brings up a kind of cognitive dissonance to attach meanings to this word other than what it clearly means (to me). Considering the Greek origin of it, I see the English word just as I see the Greek one; without any need for belief in its meaning.

However, I wouldn't mind the argument worded as "We are all born unbelievers". It works quite the same.

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