Is agnosticism even a religion?
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07-09-2012, 01:09 PM
RE: Is agnosticism even a religion?
(07-09-2012 11:47 AM)xLegendofLink096x Wrote:  Can someone explain the difference between someone being Atheist and someone being Agnostic? Please.

At it's simplest, theists believe in some god/relgion, atheists don't (which in no way means they must believe there definitely is no god - it simply means they don't share any of the theists' beliefs). Gnostics know something, agnostics don't. Or more accurately, gnostics claim they know something, agnostics make no such claims. In the religious sense, gnostic vs. agnostic applies to knowledge of god and/or the rest of the realms of religion such as souls, the afterlife, etc.

So, the terms are not mutually exclusive.

I believe that all honest religious people would be agnostic theists: they believe in their god and/or religion while admitting that they don't know for sure - they admit that they take it on faith and are usually quite happy to do so.

I have met many gnostic theists who believe in their religion but they claim they have specific and infallible knowledge that their beliefs are true. I won't speak to whether they truly believe that, or maybe they're just trying to convince themselves, or maybe they really are right, or just deluded into believing they are right, or maybe they make so much money as apologists that they will say anything to keep the cash flowing (yes, that's a specific dig at just a few obvious apologists), etc. However, I personally don't believe they are being honest with me, or maybe even with themselves. If it were really that easy to know this stuff, infallibly, then I think more people would know and there would be far fewer "false" religions - we'd all just know the one that is right. All pure speculation on my part.

Most atheists I know are also agnostic. They don't have any religious belief, making them atheist, but these people don't claim to have specific knowledge to prove that there is no god. They admit that they lack the knowledge to make a specific claim for or against god and therefore are agnostic.

Some atheists claim to be gnostic atheists. They are atheists who claim that they have enough knowledge or information to know that there is no god. I for one hold the skeptical position that, even if all their knowledge and information is completely correct, it doesn't rule out the possibility that there is a god who created everything just that way so I don't believe that anyone can, honestly, be a gnostic atheist, but I'm sure others would dispute me on this.

Side note: not everyone uses these terms the same way, but this seems to be the most prevalent usage among the most respected authors in the field, though again, maybe that's just my perspective and I could be wrong.

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07-09-2012, 02:38 PM
RE: Is agnosticism even a religion?
(07-09-2012 11:47 AM)xLegendofLink096x Wrote:  Can someone explain the difference between someone being Atheist and someone being Agnostic? Please.

I thought I explained that in an earlier post.
Atheists sit in chairs and relax and Agnostics stand around not knowing what to do.
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07-09-2012, 04:40 PM
RE: Is agnosticism even a religion?
(06-09-2012 09:23 PM)runallday4 Wrote:  In this video she explains that agnosticism actually isn't a religion. Is she right?

I don't even think agnosticism is a word.

The old gods are dead, let's invent some new ones before something really bad happens.
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07-09-2012, 04:42 PM
RE: Is agnosticism even a religion?
(07-09-2012 08:09 AM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Shiruba.

Fortunately there is no need for you to see a middle. We Agnostics will simply live there happily Cool

And I'm not an Agnostic to be friendly. I'm an Agnostic because I'm a logical human being Cool

We're here!
We're Agnostic!
Upon your terminology, run a diagnostic!

Yeah, we're still working on our chant... Drinking Beverage

Hey, Run.

Agnosticism isn't a creed. It's a method.

Some people simply think it's about not having knowledge. They're entitled to their opinion and I'm entitled to disagree.

Hey, Bucky.

Word up on the narrow definitions.

Do you like the Weak Atheist, Strong Atheist dichotomy, or do you think there is another term for people who don't simply lack belief, but make positive statements as well?

Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt

Most agnostics I know basically say their agnostic just to be more friendly to theists. I understand the definition. I just believe agnostics and atheists tend to be the same because even though they don't know a deity exists they don't actively worship it. I don't know for a hundred percent sure if God exists but with how flawed, idiotic, insane, ridiculous and contradicting such a being is in almost any religion. I can safely say that it is much more likely that it was taken from previous mythologies and more likely written by men. I believe we can all agree that we cannot disprove God but we also can't disprove the flying spaghetti monster so even though I don't know a flying spaghetti monster exists I still don't worship it and am not a Pastafarian. To me, its just more you believe in these adult fairy tales or you don't. Saying I don't know still leaves you in my camp.

Also, I never said all agnostics aren't doing it to please theists or are not cool but more that the ones I know say so to not offend theists. I know I used to call myself an agnostic to please theists. For some reason telling them I don't know is more pleasing to them even though you still don't worship their deity.

Also, I believe most of us our logical if we gave up on fairy tales. Drinking Beverage But keep working on your chant! One day maybe after we eradicate ourselves over the next world war some primitive human beings will find it and begin to worship it as some rain prayer or invincible saying. Thumbsup

"Mankind must put an end to war, or war will put an end to mankind." -John F Kennedy

The way to see by Faith is to shut the eye of Reason.” -Benjamin Franklin

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07-09-2012, 05:49 PM
RE: Is agnosticism even a religion?
Hey, Shiruba.

Quote:I just believe agnostics and atheists tend to be the same because even though they don't know a deity exists they don't actively worship it.

In some senses, yes, we are similar to you. But in others, we are not. We're open to a spiritual reality that you've cut yourself off from. For me, this question goes well beyond who goes to church or not. It's about the very construction of reality.

For the record, I have very little doubt that religions evolved over time.

Also for the record, we can absolutely disprove the Flying Spaghetti Monster. It was invented by Bobby Henderson in 2005 as part of a satirical letter.

You can say that I'm in your camp, but when you do a perimeter sweep and discover that I'm nowhere to be found, please understand that I told you so Cool

I'm an Agnostic for nobody but myself.

I kind of like the idea of future primitives worshiping me as God.





Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt
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07-09-2012, 05:56 PM
RE: Is agnosticism even a religion?
Fuck Ya - SNAP

Preach Ghost !!!

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07-09-2012, 06:44 PM
RE: Is agnosticism even a religion?
(07-09-2012 05:56 PM)Rahn127 Wrote:  Fuck Ya - SNAP

Preach Ghost !!!

To answer the O.P, I do not see agnosticism as a religion
If agnostics see God, in the concept of general definitions, as ineffable then this is clear cut; they don't believe in that God If I say "peace of mind is good" as a generalization, there is arguably strong probability of this being so, despite the fact that some may like feeling on edge.

If something is unknowable, to us, it can hardly be a worthwhile absolute truth.only, in that, we cannot be too cocky about the many things we really think we know to be true, in a hard sense.
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07-09-2012, 08:35 PM (This post was last modified: 07-09-2012 09:17 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Is agnosticism even a religion?
(07-09-2012 08:09 AM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Bucky.

Word up on the narrow definitions.

Do you like the Weak Atheist, Strong Atheist dichotomy, or do you think there is another term for people who don't simply lack belief, but make positive statements as well?

I don't like it, but I recognize it's "out there".
Perhaps, it would help if we would call ourselves "a-theists", as opposed to "Atheists". That would solve the problem.

I KNOW for a fact, that the human invented Yahweh Sabaoth could not possibly be (a) god. I know where the idea came from.

Do I "know" there are no "other" possible gods ? For me the question is irrelevant. I am certain, that within my lifetime, there will be no evidence for any gods, and no reason to waste my time on the question. Do I wonder if is there is a 1957 Chevy orbiting Pluto ? No. Do I wonder if there is a god ? No. It's not something I concern myself with, BECAUSE for EVERY single iteration of a god I have seen, there is no reason to think it is true, and in fact many reasons to think they are not true. At some point, you stop wasting your time on the subject.

If anyone ever confronts me with the argument, I let 'em have it about "how do you know what is in my brain, and what I mean" .... "how do you know, what you mean, is what I mean".

The "gnostic" vs "agnostic" thing, makes me nervous. Gnosticism was a movement in Greek philosophy. I wonder how many people throwing the term around know that. So I don't have the answer to the "positive assertion" business.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein
Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music - Friedrich Nietzsche
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07-09-2012, 09:11 PM (This post was last modified: 07-09-2012 09:22 PM by ShirubaDangan.)
RE: Is agnosticism even a religion?
(07-09-2012 05:49 PM)Ghost Wrote:  Hey, Shiruba.

Quote:I just believe agnostics and atheists tend to be the same because even though they don't know a deity exists they don't actively worship it.

In some senses, yes, we are similar to you. But in others, we are not. We're open to a spiritual reality that you've cut yourself off from. For me, this question goes well beyond who goes to church or not. It's about the very construction of reality.

For the record, I have very little doubt that religions evolved over time.

Also for the record, we can absolutely disprove the Flying Spaghetti Monster. It was invented by Bobby Henderson in 2005 as part of a satirical letter.

You can say that I'm in your camp, but when you do a perimeter sweep and discover that I'm nowhere to be found, please understand that I told you so Cool

I'm an Agnostic for nobody but myself.

I kind of like the idea of future primitives worshiping me as God.





Peace and Love and Empathy,

Matt

Who ever said I closed my views on anything spiritual? I never said that and I would not believe but if you at least provided evidence for it. To believe I have cut myself off anything supernatural is false. I don't and have not but even though you say you can prove the spaghetti monster was created how can you prove it doesn't exist? What if the spaghetti monster talked through him to reveal itself? You cannot prove it a hundred percent wrong even if you prove the creator made it up. I can pretend that I see a rainbow colored monkey that looks like George Bush and that it grants people wishes and eats nothing but toe nail clippings for sustenance but you can't prove it doesn't exist no matter hos ludicrous it sounds. I know the God of the Bible, Torah, or Quran is definitely most likely written by men with how flawed it is. No "perfect" deity that they believe in would contradict itself so much and sound so stupid to people of the modern era. I would believe the best evidence God could have ever given us would be of science and how the world works I would be so fascinated and knew it would be the truth. Instead I'm given a cure for leprosy that requires you to bleed yourself.

I mean how can anyone possibly believe that this being could exist? How could it not be written by men? I may cut myself off from this but not because I wouldn't believe it but because I simply have absolutely no evidence to do so.

I can't disprove God, Ghosts, Aliens that meddle with our lives although the last two have much more evidence to me that they exist compared to God. I don't close myself off to anything and I've actually been on two ghost hunts here from some paranormal event. I don't go there with a close mind and I find it rather fun and intriguing but still I see it as simple as this. You either worship a deity or you don't. You may claim you don't know but you still aren't worshiping it and you say I closed my mind off to it but so did you. So we aren't very different. I believe we just use different words to describe ourselves. Whatever we are comfortable with.

Also, I believe religions have dramatically evolved over time while some things remaining the same. We don't see Christian's stoning their children and we constantly see them pick and choose from the Bible what they want to follow. I guarantee during the dark ages it was more like the middle east currently but with less explosions and rifles. Religion is just a great feel good story and it evolves to fit the lifestyle of the individual who wants to believe. As this continues we already have Christians who accept gay marriage and others who accept abortions(even though I think that is more of what God wants since he loves to murder infants.) I believe the religious will be less and less about their book and more and more about just believing in a sky daddy in the sky that promises them something that isn't there. A more basic form of a deity rather than one who sends someone to hell just because he feels like it. This God will soon not exist and will be replaced by another form of a deity.

"Mankind must put an end to war, or war will put an end to mankind." -John F Kennedy

The way to see by Faith is to shut the eye of Reason.” -Benjamin Franklin

It has been a long time. How have you been?
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07-09-2012, 09:14 PM
RE: Is agnosticism even a religion?
Hey guys, sorry for the confusion with my first post, I think I was just overly tired when I wrote it. What I really meant to ask was if you agree with Laci Green (the girl in the video).

(07-09-2012 05:49 PM)Ghost Wrote:  
Quote:I just believe agnostics and atheists tend to be the same because even though they don't know a deity exists they don't actively worship it.

In some senses, yes, we are similar to you. But in others, we are not. We're open to a spiritual reality that you've cut yourself off from. For me, this question goes well beyond who goes to church or not. It's about the very construction of reality.

I think you are still misunderstanding the definition of the two words. Agnosticism isn't it's own category. It's not atheist, agnostic, or theist. It's agnostic atheist, agnostic theist, gnostic atheist, and gnostic theist.

I call myself an atheist (if we're being technical and agnostic atheist), but I think that's how most atheists are, there not saying they're certain, they're saying that's what they believe. I'm just as open to the possibility of a God as you are. If there was some clear sign that one existed I would believe in it.
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