"I do not believe in the existence of any god(s)"
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
07-08-2014, 02:51 AM
"I do not believe in the existence of any god(s)"
why do the faithful keep confusing it for "I believe god(s) doesn't exist" ?

why is it that they can't see the obvious difference ?

the latter is making the claim that god doesn't exist, the former is saying that they lack the belief that god exists
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
07-08-2014, 03:53 AM
RE: "I do not believe in the existence of any god(s)"
Careful, because the wording of your thread title is ambiguous. Probably the least ambiguous way to phrase it would be "I lack belief in the existence of any god".

[Image: E3WvRwZ.gif]
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
07-08-2014, 04:07 AM
RE: "I do not believe in the existence of any god(s)"
[Image: 76NpzC.jpg]

Theism is to believe what other people claim, Atheism is to ask "why should I".
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 12 users Like sporehux's post
07-08-2014, 05:04 AM
RE: "I do not believe in the existence of any god(s)"
Because, using that strawman, they can then claim that atheism is a faith/religion. Problem is, if that invalidates atheism, it does the same for theism, but they don't realize it.

The truth is absolute. Life forms are specks of specks (...) of specks of dust in the universe.
Why settle for normal, when you can be so much more? Why settle for something, when you can have everything?
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
07-08-2014, 07:59 AM
RE: "I do not believe in the existence of any god(s)"
(07-08-2014 05:04 AM)One Above All Wrote:  Because, using that strawman, they can then claim that atheism is a faith/religion. Problem is, if that invalidates atheism, it does the same for theism, but they don't realize it.

I think their "logic" is more along the lines of: "What you are saying requires you to have faith. Therefore, it is a set of beliefs. So, you are not using reasoning, logic or science. You are just pushing your beliefs."

On the other hand, I'm pretty much convinced that a lot of theists don't really understand the concept. Like it almost doesn't fit into their world view.

"What do you mean you don't wear a hat? Everyone wears a hat. You must not realize that you are actually wearing one, you are not wearing one to be different but deep down you love hats or you just say you don't wear hats when in fact you do! Because everyone wears hats!"
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
07-08-2014, 08:24 AM (This post was last modified: 07-08-2014 08:31 AM by Adrianime.)
RE: "I do not believe in the existence of any god(s)"
I understand the confusion actually. It took me a lot of thinking to see the difference between "I don't believe in god" and, "I believe there is no god."

To me it seemed like one implied the other. I remember sitting down thinking at one point, "I don't believe in the color red....how is that different from saying I believe there is no color red. Because it effing seems like you are saying the same thing." After a while I got it...yes yes lacking a belief is not the same thing as believing in not. The popular gumball machine example provides a good explanation.

Although personally, I believe there are no gods. I don't see any reason to give the idea of gods more credibility than fairy-dragons. I also believe there are none of those. I'm also not afraid of being wrong, so I don't mind taking this stance that agrees with how I see the world.

It might be interesting to people to look up the difference between weak and strong atheism.

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
07-08-2014, 08:34 AM
RE: "I do not believe in the existence of any god(s)"
I've noticed that Christianity... at least, the evangelical, fundamentalist Christianity that makes itself so well known and loved in the public sphere... is enamored with binary states. A person is either male or female... no gender fluidity is allowed. Males must love females and females vice versa... that is part of what it means to be male and female. Then there's the us-or-against-us attitudes, the serve man or serve God, and so on.

"I believe God exists" and "I believe that God does not exist" are nicely binary opposites that fit well into this binary viewpoint. The option of "I have reserved judgement, awaiting evidence" does not fit well into the binary viewpoint. I think that's why they have trouble with it, when they have trouble with it.

Oh, and I prefer the phrasing "absent a belief in god" over "lacking a belief in god". While they mean the same thing semantically, "lack" carries connotations of missing something that is desirable.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
07-08-2014, 08:40 AM
RE: "I do not believe in the existence of any god(s)"
(07-08-2014 08:24 AM)Adrianime Wrote:  The popular gumball machine example provides a good explanation.

Can you explain that gum ball thing. I know I've seen it but cannot remember the wording.

Something like, do you believe there are a million gun balls in there. No I lack belief, there are probably only 300?
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
07-08-2014, 08:41 AM
RE: "I do not believe in the existence of any god(s)"
(07-08-2014 02:51 AM)Ace Wrote:  why do the faithful keep confusing it for "I believe god(s) doesn't exist" ?

why is it that they can't see the obvious difference ?

the latter is making the claim that god doesn't exist, the former is saying that they lack the belief that god exists

It could be a lack of understanding of logic and boolean algebra. They might see it as a yes/no proposition and not see a null position on the matter.

In my experience, it's frequently an attempt to vilify. I was talking with a Baptist pastor online not too long ago. At first I thought we were having a discussion in good faith, but he'd keep changing subjects halfway through. My initial assumption was he could tell he was losing and was trying to save face. After three subject changes, he finally found what he was looking for: he was trying to get me to say something so he could interpret what I said as "anti-Christian" and then refused to read anything else I said after that point without dismissing it as such.

He didn't like my agnostic stance that God couldn't be proven or disproven and my assertion that there's no non-presuppositional evidence for God, yet he knew in his heart of hearts I was wrong. He complained about my "defensive posturing" because he knew he didn't have a good counter, so he prodded around until he could attack me, and called it a day.


TL;DR: it's the hallmark of intellectual dishonesty and likely an attempt to "win" an unwinnable argument.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
07-08-2014, 08:51 AM (This post was last modified: 07-08-2014 10:13 AM by Adrianime.)
RE: "I do not believe in the existence of any god(s)"
(07-08-2014 08:40 AM)proplayer44 Wrote:  
(07-08-2014 08:24 AM)Adrianime Wrote:  The popular gumball machine example provides a good explanation.

Can you explain that gum ball thing. I know I've seen it but cannot remember the wording.

Something like, do you believe there are a million gun balls in there. No I lack belief, there are probably only 300?
Technically your example could work, but that isn't the normal example.

Normal example:

Imagine you walk up to a gumball machine that is full of hundreds of gumballs. Now imagine somebody makes a claim, "The number of gumballs in this machine is even!" You can call this person a gumball evenist. Now, if you reject that claim, does that mean you automatically think the opposite? No. You can say, "I don't accept your claim to be true." without asserting that the claim is not true (i.e. without being a gumball oddest). You can simply not know, and not actively believe that the number of gumballs is odd, or even.

That position would be close to pure agnosticism. Or if there was a word, "agumball evenist" that meant, "lacking a belief that the number of gumballs in the machine are even" then you could be an agnostic agumball evenist.

I prefer fantasy, but I have to live in reality.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes Adrianime's post
Post Reply
Forum Jump: