Inconsistent atheist arguments
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29-03-2015, 01:02 PM
Inconsistent atheist arguments
How do you respond to the following?

(1) "Atheism is not a belief system, it's simply a lack of belief in something"

My personal opinion is that this claim is used to insulate atheists from criticism of their own beliefs while they are busy criticizing beliefs held by theists.

For example:

Atheist: "Religion was responsible for the Crusades, the Inquisition, 9/11 and all sorts of other horrible things. Bin Laden was religious, so were all those pedophile priests. The world would be better off if people were atheists, not religious."

Theist: "What about Mao, Stalin, Pol Pot, etc..? "

Atheist: "Those people were Communists, not atheists. Atheism is not a belief system, it's simply a lack of belief in god."

(2) Atheist: "Atheists have a higher average I.Q. than theists; it's scientifically proven, which indicates that theism is a product of low intelligence and that atheism is more rational."

Theist: "By your own definition of atheism, my dog is an atheist, since he lacks a belief in god. Wouldn't the inclusion of dogs in the sample bring down the average IQ just a little bit?"

Atheist: "Dogs don't count, because they're not intelligent enough to conceive of a god in the first place. No dog ever thinks "There is no such thing as god""

Theist: "So, now suddenly atheism has become a positive belief? (the philosophy of naturalism)"

Why change definitions of "atheism" from argument to argument, except to gain rhetorical advantage?
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29-03-2015, 01:07 PM
RE: Inconsistent atheist arguments
I don't. It just means I don't believe in god(s). Period.


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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29-03-2015, 01:14 PM
RE: Inconsistent atheist arguments
Does this apply to all atheists? Buddhists also? Just asking.

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29-03-2015, 01:22 PM
RE: Inconsistent atheist arguments
Apparently, the OP thinks that atheism is synonymous with "absorbant of all reasonable propositions" when truly all it is is a "rejection of one class of poorly reasoned propositions."

The second argument is lame, and I think the OP just made it up.
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29-03-2015, 01:24 PM
RE: Inconsistent atheist arguments
(29-03-2015 01:02 PM)jakedanger Wrote:  How do you respond to the following?

(1) "Atheism is not a belief system, it's simply a lack of belief in something"

My personal opinion is that this claim is used to insulate atheists from criticism of their own beliefs while they are busy criticizing beliefs held by theists.

For example:

Atheist: "Religion was responsible for the Crusades, the Inquisition, 9/11 and all sorts of other horrible things. Bin Laden was religious, so were all those pedophile priests. The world would be better off if people were atheists, not religious."

Theist: "What about Mao, Stalin, Pol Pot, etc..? "

Atheist: "Those people were Communists, not atheists. Atheism is not a belief system, it's simply a lack of belief in god."

(2) Atheist: "Atheists have a higher average I.Q. than theists; it's scientifically proven, which indicates that theism is a product of low intelligence and that atheism is more rational."

Theist: "By your own definition of atheism, my dog is an atheist, since he lacks a belief in god. Wouldn't the inclusion of dogs in the sample bring down the average IQ just a little bit?"

Atheist: "Dogs don't count, because they're not intelligent enough to conceive of a god in the first place. No dog ever thinks "There is no such thing as god""

Theist: "So, now suddenly atheism has become a positive belief? (the philosophy of naturalism)"

Why change definitions of "atheism" from argument to argument, except to gain rhetorical advantage?

In regards to 1, the rhetorical theist in this exchange is missing the point. Yes, those notable communists were atheists. But the distinction being made, and the one that your rhetorical atheist should have clarified rather than restating the definition of atheism, is that they were MOTIVATED by their communism and their desire to gain and maintain power, not their atheism. I no more ascribe Stalin's crimes to being an atheist than I do to him having a mustache. In the case of 9/11 and the Crusades, there is a clear and well-documented causal link leading from the religious belief to the crimes. (The Inquisition is a bit more complicated. Also, WHICH Inquisition?)

In regards to 2, it is clear that the atheist speaking is referring to PEOPLE who do not believe in a god, not all things (including those that are incapable of belief). That this concept is not 100% correctly expressed does nothing to discredit the concept itself or the point being made, just the incorrect way of expressing it. It's also the sort of casual mistake that people make in conversations all the time. This isn't a problem with atheists, it's a problem with humans.

In all communication, the goal is for both parties to make a genuine effort for the concepts being communicated to pass from one party to the other. On the part of the person communicating these concepts, that means clear statement, dictation, offering clarification, and so on. On the part of the person receiving the communication, that means reading between the lines, seeking clarification, and genuinely focusing on what's being communicated, rather than the flaws in how it is being communicated. Obtuse obsession over misstatements is the mark of someone who doesn't want to communicate.

But all right. You don't like the definition of atheist you presented and are quibbling over whether or not it is a belief system. Let's leave aside the question of whether not believing a single claim constitutes a belief system, and focus on the definition. The underlying concept being expressed by this category is "people who do not believe in a god, including the fence-sitters who do not fully disbelieve either." What word would you choose to stand in for this mouthful, if not the word "atheist"?
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29-03-2015, 01:25 PM (This post was last modified: 29-03-2015 01:28 PM by Alex K.)
RE: Inconsistent atheist arguments
(29-03-2015 01:02 PM)jakedanger Wrote:  How do you respond to the following?

(1) "Atheism is not a belief system, it's simply a lack of belief in something"

My personal opinion is that this claim is used to insulate atheists from criticism of their own beliefs while they are busy criticizing beliefs held by theists.

For example:

Atheist: "Religion was responsible for the Crusades, the Inquisition, 9/11 and all sorts of other horrible things. Bin Laden was religious, so were all those pedophile priests. The world would be better off if people were atheists, not religious."

Theist: "What about Mao, Stalin, Pol Pot, etc..? "

Atheist: "Those people were Communists, not atheists. Atheism is not a belief system, it's simply a lack of belief in god."
Man, meet straw. Straw, meet man.
Quote:(2) Atheist: "Atheists have a higher average I.Q. than theists; it's scientifically proven, which indicates that theism is a product of low intelligence and that atheism is more rational."
I don't think it is proven.
Quote:Theist: "By your own definition of atheism, my dog is an atheist, since he lacks a belief in god. Wouldn't the inclusion of dogs in the sample bring down the average IQ just a little bit?"
Extending your considerations to other species is silly.
Quote:Atheist: "Dogs don't count, because they're not intelligent enough to conceive of a god in the first place. No dog ever thinks "There is no such thing as god""

Theist: "So, now suddenly atheism has become a positive belief? (the philosophy of naturalism)"

Why change definitions of "atheism" from argument to argument, except to gain rhetorical advantage?

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I just don't like it when people tell me what I supposedly think. Especially when the answers that are put in my mouth are so dumb.
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29-03-2015, 01:26 PM
RE: Inconsistent atheist arguments
(29-03-2015 01:02 PM)jakedanger Wrote:  Atheist: "Religion was responsible for the Crusades, the Inquisition, 9/11 and all sorts of other horrible things. Bin Laden was religious, so were all those pedophile priests. The world would be better off if people were atheists, not religious."

The priests didn't abuse children because they were religious; they just got away with it often because they were able to hide behind the church. The others mentioned committed their acts in the name of their irrational beliefs.

Quote:Theist: "What about Mao, Stalin, Pol Pot, etc..? "

Atheist: "Those people were Communists, not atheists. Atheism is not a belief system, it's simply a lack of belief in god."

Did they do anything in the name of atheism? They may have been anti-religion but that was to attack a competing power base, not because they were told by their lack of belief in god to do anything. Without religious belief you are free to accept other views and some of those may be every bit as pernicious as religion. What you do believe is generally much more important than what you don't.

Quote:Atheist: "Atheists have a higher average I.Q. than theists; it's scientifically proven, which indicates that theism is a product of low intelligence and that atheism is more rational."

Studies do show a correlation between education and disbelief but that doesn't mean that theism is a "product of low intelligence", it only means that religions find easier targets in less educated people.

Quote:Atheist: "Dogs don't count, because they're not intelligent enough to conceive of a god in the first place. No dog ever thinks "There is no such thing as god""

Theist: "So, now suddenly atheism has become a positive belief? (the philosophy of naturalism)"

That doesn't follow. Not being able to entertain a concept is not the same thing as having a positive belief. Atheism, in the broad sense, is just not accepting the claim that a god exists. To reject a claim you have to consider it first. Dogs, as far as we know, can't do that.

Atheism: it's not just for communists any more!
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29-03-2015, 01:27 PM
RE: Inconsistent atheist arguments
Why do theists care what atheists think?
Why so much worry about a non-belief?
If theists just kept their beliefs out of everyone else's business, they would never hear from atheists.
It really is that simple.
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29-03-2015, 01:35 PM
RE: Inconsistent atheist arguments
Atheism is simply not-theism. The a- prefix negates the noun. If you believe in at least one god, you are a theist. Anything else makes you an atheist. That's really all there is to it. Maybe that's why a lot of theists don't seem to get it, it's almost too simple to grasp for someone conditioned to think that faces in the fire and in clouds are looking back at them.

Spending your life waiting for the messiah to come and save the world is like waiting around for the straight piece to come in Tetris. Even if it comes, by that time you've accumulated a mountain of shit so high that you're fucked no matter what you do.
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29-03-2015, 01:49 PM
RE: Inconsistent atheist arguments
atheism is the lack of belief in the existence of a deity or deities

there is no evidence that a deity exist let alone a deity from any religion so as such we have no reason to believe that a god exist
if evidence supporting a proposition can't be provided that convinces skeptics of its existence via replicable, empirical testing then the claim that it exist is rejected by default
in simple words, if there is no reason to believe it, then there is no reason to believe it

atheism has no doctrines, no leadership, no dress code, no rules on how to behave or treat each other, no adherence to anything, no hierarchy, no higher power of any kind, no point of view
while religion and communism does have all of the above

the word atheism is defined as a lack of believe or non belief in deities
the word bachelor is defined as unmarried man and like atheism it bachelor doesn't have anything thats associated with religion or ideologies or doctrines

also because I can :
1)so and so acts of terrible things have been commuted by atheists, therefore atheism is inherently bad
2)so and so acts of terrible things have been commuted by bachelors, therefore bachelors are inherently bad
neither of these two statements hold any validity

both these words are a tautology which simply means using words to represent other words, statements, descriptions. a tautology just compresses long descriptions into a single word or label
let me illustrate this, the word light bulb which is defined as a glass bulb inserted into a lamp or a socket in a ceiling, which provides light by passing an electric current through a filament or a pocket of inert gas.
all this means is that if I find an object that matches this description then that thing would be called a 'light bulb'


atheism is not a positive argument, this video explains it well




changing definitions from arguments to argument is underhanded

for a dog to be an atheist the dog must be aware of and be able to comprehend the concept of a deity and all it entails and reject it due to lack of evidence.... so far there is no evidence that dogs posses the intelligence to comprehend human concepts
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