Why agnosticism?
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30-08-2015, 06:02 AM
RE: Why agnosticism?
(30-08-2015 05:51 AM)onlinebiker Wrote:  Whyizit???

The dullest people are always the ones trying to split hairs??

I think there's some Murphy and some Sisyphus in there. Thumbsup

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30-08-2015, 06:03 AM
RE: Why agnosticism?
(30-08-2015 05:59 AM)houseofcantor Wrote:  
(30-08-2015 05:42 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  How do you define atheist?

Usually I don't. I leave it to the other guy. Big Grin

Specifically an atheist is one who rejects contemporary theology. To me, that covers the original essence of the term and the current controversy of why atheists, who lack belief, actively debate theists.

God doesn't exist, so what the fuck are we talking about? We're rejecting theology. That's my story and I'm sticking to it. Thumbsup

What if I also don't believe that god doesn't exist? IOW, what if I simply lack a belief in either direction? Could I still be an atheist by your definition, or would I need a different descriptor?
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30-08-2015, 06:05 AM
RE: Why agnosticism?
But would Sisyphus call Mr Murphy the optimist, or the other way round??

Big Grin

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30-08-2015, 06:24 AM
RE: Why agnosticism?
(30-08-2015 06:03 AM)Matt Finney Wrote:  
(30-08-2015 05:59 AM)houseofcantor Wrote:  Usually I don't. I leave it to the other guy. Big Grin

Specifically an atheist is one who rejects contemporary theology. To me, that covers the original essence of the term and the current controversy of why atheists, who lack belief, actively debate theists.

God doesn't exist, so what the fuck are we talking about? We're rejecting theology. That's my story and I'm sticking to it. Thumbsup

What if I also don't believe that god doesn't exist? IOW, what if I simply lack a belief in either direction? Could I still be an atheist by your definition, or would I need a different descriptor?

Depends on the level of the individual's investment on a label as a means of self-identification. I'm content with the label atheist, even though I'm Gwynnite. Yep, ya don't get much neck out of this corner without some Gwynnies. I'm invested. Big Grin

But unlike some other navel-gazers, I don't see a deep investment as mandatory. A core tenet of Gwynnite is the invention of a personal theology (why it was mentioned) which derives from me being a prophet - which rationally translates into "naive philosopher" (and irrationally into a whole bunch of crazy shit we'll just skip on by for the nonce.) Big Grin

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30-08-2015, 06:25 AM
RE: Why agnosticism?
(30-08-2015 06:05 AM)onlinebiker Wrote:  But would Sisyphus call Mr Murphy the optimist, or the other way round??

Big Grin

The other way around, somebody's getting rocked. Wink

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30-08-2015, 06:36 AM
RE: Why agnosticism?
One big problem, however, the more you define agnosticism, the less it is. Tongue

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30-08-2015, 07:01 AM
RE: Why agnosticism?
Here, since you are playing dress up ... ignosticism.

Getting too caught up in titles can often ruin a good story. Shy

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30-08-2015, 07:15 AM
RE: Why agnosticism?
The terms atheist, theist, and agnostic all deal with matters of belief, not knowledge. It is not possible to know whether or not there is a magical man outside of space and time that no physical experiment can observe, therefore if lack of knowledge is the test, everyone is by definition an agnostic, and the term becomes meaningless. A theist is a person who believes there is a god. Some theists claim to "know" there is a god, but they simply fail to understand the distinction between belief and knowledge.

An agnostic, therefore, is a person who has no belief regarding the existence of god, even though the etymology of the word is from Greek "without knowledge." It's a case of the modern meaning of a word differing from its root.

What some people call a "soft atheist," i.e., someone who merely does not hold a belief that there is a god, is actually an agnostic. "Without belief," as explained above.

An atheist is a person who believes there is no god, since the terms all refer to belief, rather than knowledge (which is impossible).

I am an atheist. I believe (though I cannot prove) that there is no god. I also disbelieve in angels, demons, The Devil, Santa Claus, the Easter bunny, the tooth fairy, the so-called "energy vortexes" of Sedona, AZ, astrology, perpetual-motion machines, and every other form of religious and quasi-religious crap that nutters invent on a regular basis.

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30-08-2015, 07:21 AM
RE: Why agnosticism?
(30-08-2015 07:15 AM)daniel1948 Wrote:  What some people call a "soft atheist," i.e., someone who merely does not hold a belief that there is a god, is actually an agnostic.

It's that guy. Tongue

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30-08-2015, 07:24 AM
RE: Why agnosticism?
(30-08-2015 07:15 AM)daniel1948 Wrote:  The terms atheist, theist, and agnostic all deal with matters of belief, not knowledge. It is not possible to know whether or not there is a magical man outside of space and time that no physical experiment can observe, therefore if lack of knowledge is the test, everyone is by definition an agnostic, and the term becomes meaningless. A theist is a person who believes there is a god. Some theists claim to "know" there is a god, but they simply fail to understand the distinction between belief and knowledge.

An agnostic, therefore, is a person who has no belief regarding the existence of god, even though the etymology of the word is from Greek "without knowledge." It's a case of the modern meaning of a word differing from its root.

What some people call a "soft atheist," i.e., someone who merely does not hold a belief that there is a god, is actually an agnostic. "Without belief," as explained above.

An atheist is a person who believes there is no god, since the terms all refer to belief, rather than knowledge (which is impossible).

I am an atheist. I believe (though I cannot prove) that there is no god. I also disbelieve in angels, demons, The Devil, Santa Claus, the Easter bunny, the tooth fairy, the so-called "energy vortexes" of Sedona, AZ, astrology, perpetual-motion machines, and every other form of religious and quasi-religious crap that nutters invent on a regular basis.

Interesting....

Perhaps the biggest part of the problem is that we define these words so differently. By your definition, atheism and agnosticism are incompatible, and that's the way the author of the first video defines them as well, but I have always considered atheism to include everyone who is not a theist. It would be nice we could all reach consensus on definitions. Consider
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