Question from a Theist
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
09-04-2012, 01:18 AM
RE: Question from a Theist
(07-04-2012 04:13 AM)SixForty Wrote:  I'd love to hear atheists' opinions on a question. I've heard the following statement numerous times in various different forms from a wide variety of atheists:

It's not that 'I believe there is NO God', it's just that 'I do not believe there IS a God'

This is usually given in response to someone claiming that atheism is a religion or belief system, or in response to a request to prove that there is no God. Regardless, I'm sure a number of you have heard something similar, and some of you may even say the same thing.

My question is this:

How is the statement "I believe there is no God" different from the statement "I do not believe there is a God"? How do they vary in a significant way? How are those two not logically equivalent?

I have my own ideas on this, and my own opinions about it, but I'd love to hear what atheists have to say on the matter.


I believe X is a posative assertion that X is true. That is to say I believe there is no God asserts a belief in the statement there is no God.

I do not believe there is a God, borrow from scentific terminology and is a paraphrasing the contension that insufficent evidence exists to support the claim that God exists. As it is phrased there is no difference linguistically in the two statement and the use of the distiction in this form is lasiness on the part of the whoever you have been been speaking to I suspect.

In its full context Im sure you can see that there is a difference between I dont belief and I have yet to be convinced.

The latter is what atheism or perhaps more rightly agnostism is, it is not a belief in anything either the existence or the non existence of God, but the understanding that there is insufficent evidence available to to conclude there is one.

Of course atheism can be a matter of "faith" theres more than a few atheists who "know" there is no God, but really this is as unsupportable from an evidence based view as a belief in God is. Agnostism is not about belief at all, agnostism is about knowledge (gnosis) agnostics are without knowledge of God.

Hope thats of some use to you.

Legal Disclaimer: I am right, I reserve the right to be wrong without notice, opinions may change, your statutory rights are not affected, opinions expressed are not my own and are an approximation for the sake of communication.
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
09-04-2012, 02:01 AM
RE: Question from a Theist
Isn't this just semantics?

Observer

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.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
09-04-2012, 06:30 AM
RE: Question from a Theist
Isn't everything just hydrogen? Tongue

[Image: klingon_zps7e68578a.jpg]
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes houseofcantor's post
09-04-2012, 02:52 PM
RE: Question from a Theist
(09-04-2012 02:01 AM)Observer Wrote:  Isn't this just semantics?
Is'nt every communication semantic by definition?

I'll answer that yes it is.


se·man·tics
/sɪˈmæntɪks/ Show Spelled[si-man-tiks] Show IPA
noun ( used with a singular verb )
1.
Linguistics .
a.
the study of meaning.
b.
the study of linguistic development by classifying and examining changes in meaning and form.
2.
Also called significs. the branch of semiotics dealing with the relations between signs and what they denote.
3.
the meaning, or an interpretation of the meaning, of a word, sign, sentence, etc.: Let's not argue about semantics.
4.
general semantics.

Legal Disclaimer: I am right, I reserve the right to be wrong without notice, opinions may change, your statutory rights are not affected, opinions expressed are not my own and are an approximation for the sake of communication.
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
09-04-2012, 06:08 PM
RE: Question from a Theist
(09-04-2012 06:30 AM)houseofcantor Wrote:  Isn't everything just hydrogen? Tongue

Only so long as there is enough H to fuse into He. After that, well shit starts hitting the fan. Wink

As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
09-04-2012, 07:35 PM
RE: Question from a Theist
(07-04-2012 04:13 AM)SixForty Wrote:  I'd love to hear atheists' opinions on a question. I've heard the following statement numerous times in various different forms from a wide variety of atheists:

It's not that 'I believe there is NO God', it's just that 'I do not believe there IS a God'

This is usually given in response to someone claiming that atheism is a religion or belief system, or in response to a request to prove that there is no God. Regardless, I'm sure a number of you have heard something similar, and some of you may even say the same thing.

My question is this:

How is the statement "I believe there is no God" different from the statement "I do not believe there is a God"? How do they vary in a significant way? How are those two not logically equivalent?

I have my own ideas on this, and my own opinions about it, but I'd love to hear what atheists have to say on the matter.
It's the difference between positive atheism and negative atheism.

They are not logically equivalent. If you tell me that you have a genius IQ, I (as a skeptic) will not automatically believe you and may even reject your assertion if it doesn't align with what I know about you. However, that doesn't mean that I've already concluded that you are not a genius. The lack of evidence doesn't allow me to conclude anything one way or the other, but only to assume that my presupposition (that you, like the majority of the population, are probably not a genius) is correct until you do bring strong evidence.

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply
Forum Jump: