Why do atheists become atheists?
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21-01-2015, 03:43 PM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(21-01-2015 03:42 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  
(21-01-2015 03:39 PM)Free Wrote:  Again, this demonstrates yet more lack of knowledge. And again, the lack of knowledge does not eliminate the possibility or impossibility.

Even if you do not know how to assess the possibility or impossibility due to a lack of direct evidence supporting existence, it by no means eliminates the possibility or impossibility of existence.

Like I said, no one in history has ever demonstrated the knowledge necessary to postulate a probability or possibility of a god.

The burden of proof remains on those making god claims.

And the argument isn't that ignorance = impossible, the argument is that lack of knowledge =/= burden of proof not met, which = possibility and probability remain ~0.

Like I said, the ability to perceive of it in the imagination does not mean its probability immediately exceeds 0.

Hence why I am 7.0, and why this argument is all about why others are at 6.0.

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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21-01-2015, 03:46 PM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(21-01-2015 03:43 PM)Free Wrote:  
(21-01-2015 03:42 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  Like I said, no one in history has ever demonstrated the knowledge necessary to postulate a probability or possibility of a god.

The burden of proof remains on those making god claims.

And the argument isn't that ignorance = impossible, the argument is that lack of knowledge =/= burden of proof not met, which = possibility and probability remain ~0.

Like I said, the ability to perceive of it in the imagination does not mean its probability immediately exceeds 0.

hence why i am 7.0, and why this argument is all about why others are at 6.0

Agnostics exist. I see no issue there, but it is because they have a belief that a god is still possible (or because they care so little or know so little about the claims of a god that they have never been able to formulate a definitive opinion one way or the other. Which would be like asking someone from a South American tribe that has remained isolated if baseball is the greatest sport on Earth. They have no idea and know nothing of it, so they'd never be able to form an informed opinion on the question.)

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21-01-2015, 03:47 PM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(21-01-2015 03:46 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  
(21-01-2015 03:43 PM)Free Wrote:  hence why i am 7.0, and why this argument is all about why others are at 6.0

Agnostics exist. I see no issue there, but it is because they have a belief that a god is still possible (or because they care so little or know so little about the claims of a god that they have never been able to formulate a definitive opinion one way or the other. Which would be like asking someone from a South American tribe that has remained isolated if baseball is the greatest sport on Earth. They have no idea and know nothing of it, so they'd never be able to form an informed opinion on the question.)

I don't disagree with this either, and again you are confirming my point. You said:

"it is because they have a belief that a god is still possible"

And that is exactly what this argument is about. Anyone below the 7.0 on the Dawkin's scale harbors agnostic values, and not fully atheistic values.

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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21-01-2015, 03:51 PM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(21-01-2015 03:47 PM)Free Wrote:  
(21-01-2015 03:46 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  Agnostics exist. I see no issue there, but it is because they have a belief that a god is still possible (or because they care so little or know so little about the claims of a god that they have never been able to formulate a definitive opinion one way or the other. Which would be like asking someone from a South American tribe that has remained isolated if baseball is the greatest sport on Earth. They have no idea and know nothing of it, so they'd never be able to form an informed opinion on the question.)

I don't disagree with this either, and again you are confirming my point.

To the tribesman in my example, the only honest answer that they could give is "I don't know." But based on their knowledge, if asked to answer in the positive or negative (yes or no), the answer would have to be "no" based on no evidence having been presented to demonstrate that it is possible that baseball is the greatest sport on Earth.

At least baseball could be shown to be real though with minor effort. Men (and women, I'm not chauvinistic pig) have tried for millennia to demonstrate that god's possibility exceeds 0, and never have. Therefore the most reasonable conclusion is that it is still 0.

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21-01-2015, 03:52 PM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
"And that is exactly what this argument is about. Anyone below the 7.0 on the Dawkin's scale harbors agnostic values, and not fully atheistic values."

Not necessarily. Someone who truly doesn't know, probably operates in their daily lives as if a god doesn't exist. Making them functionally an atheist but actually an agnostic.

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21-01-2015, 04:03 PM (This post was last modified: 21-01-2015 04:17 PM by Free.)
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(21-01-2015 03:52 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  "And that is exactly what this argument is about. Anyone below the 7.0 on the Dawkin's scale harbors agnostic values, and not fully atheistic values."

Not necessarily. Someone who truly doesn't know, probably operates in their daily lives as if a god doesn't exist. Making them functionally an atheist but actually an agnostic.

But that is the definition of an agnostic; they do not know for certain. A pure agnostic thinks the existence of god is equally possible and impossible. From there you have a weak and defacto atheist, which also demonstrates the "I don't know" position.

A strong atheist says, "God does not exist," and states it as fact.

Therefore, if anyone is less than a strong atheist, they are agnostic to some degree, and therefore cannot dispute the fact that their position does not eliminate the possibility or impossibility of the existence of a supernatural entity commonly known as God.

They harbor to a degree- however infinitesimal- the possibility that God could exist.

How can anyone become an atheist when we are all born with no beliefs in the first place? We are atheists because we were born this way.
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21-01-2015, 04:14 PM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
Head is going to explode.

Let’s look at what started this discussion, the Dawkins Scale:

[Image: dawkins-scale.jpg]

In my clouded mind anyone who does not hold the position of “I know there is no god” is an agnostic, no matter what reason they give for saying “I don’t know”.

"Not necessarily. Someone who truly doesn't know, probably operates in their daily lives as if a god doesn't exist. Making them functionally an atheist but actually an agnostic.” -TBD

But the scale doesn’t revolve around “functionality”, to be a 7.0, a Strong Atheist, you must be able to proclaim “I know there is no god”, I don’t see any wiggle room here.

“I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s.”~Mark Twain
“Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.”~ Ambrose Bierce
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21-01-2015, 04:25 PM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(21-01-2015 03:26 PM)Free Wrote:  It is not a matter of a claim; it is necessarily implicit. If you do not know, then you cannot eliminate either the possibility nor impossibility.

Full stop.
Sure.
I haven't eliminated either scenario, thus I'm on the fence and my position is "I don't know".
Me not eliminating the option of "possibility" does not mean that I believe it is possible.
I also haven't eliminated the option of "impossibility" so I don't have a belief that it is impossible.
If you are going to insist that me not eliminating the option of "possibility" means that I have a belief that it is possible, to be consistent you will also need to assert that me not eliminating the option of "impossibility" means that I have a belief that it is impossible.
Your position (of my beliefs) means that you insist that I believe both that it is possible and also believe that it is impossible. You have me believing two contradictory things at the same time. Which is absurd.
Belief means closing your mind to the opposing options.
If I believed that it is possible then I must also believe that it is not impossible.
However, my position is that there isn't enough information to determine whether it is possible or impossible. I am not about to wave my hand and discount either one. So I remain focused on "I don't know" rather than to believe either one.
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21-01-2015, 04:31 PM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(21-01-2015 04:25 PM)Stevil Wrote:  
(21-01-2015 03:26 PM)Free Wrote:  It is not a matter of a claim; it is necessarily implicit. If you do not know, then you cannot eliminate either the possibility nor impossibility.

Full stop.
Sure.
I haven't eliminated either scenario, thus I'm on the fence and my position is "I don't know".
Me not eliminating the option of "possibility" does not mean that I believe it is possible.
I also haven't eliminated the option of "impossibility" so I don't have a belief that it is impossible.
If you are going to insist that me not eliminating the option of "possibility" means that I have a belief that it is possible, to be consistent you will also need to assert that me not eliminating the option of "impossibility" means that I have a belief that it is impossible.
Your position (of my beliefs) means that you insist that I believe both that it is possible and also believe that it is impossible. You have me believing two contradictory things at the same time. Which is absurd.
Belief means closing your mind to the opposing options.
If I believed that it is possible then I must also believe that it is not impossible.
However, my position is that there isn't enough information to determine whether it is possible or impossible. I am not about to wave my hand and discount either one. So I remain focused on "I don't know" rather than to believe either one.

Based on this then I would suspect you rank yourself a 6?

“I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s.”~Mark Twain
“Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.”~ Ambrose Bierce
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21-01-2015, 04:33 PM
RE: Why do atheists become atheists?
(21-01-2015 03:08 PM)Free Wrote:  Just because you do not know if it is possible for a god to exist, does that in any way at all eliminate the possibility?

Just because you do not know if it is possible for a god to exist, does that in any way at all eliminate the impossibility?

My not knowing would not eliminate the possibility or demonstrate the impossibility. It also doesn't admit the possibility or claim the impossibility.

If I say I don't know if something is possible that doesn't mean I am saying that it is possible. I'm saying I have no belief about the possible-ness either way. I have no way to judge whether it is possible or not.

Q: Is it possible intelligent life exists on other planets?
A: Based on what I know about how life developed on Earth, yes, I believe that is possible
Q: Is it possible that the pope is secretly an atheist?
A: Based on what I know about human nature, yes, I believe that is a possibility
Q: Is it possible that there can be a square circle
A: Based on the definitions, no, that is impossible
Q: Is it possible for a god to exist?
A: I don't know, I have no basis for a belief; you'd have to provide a specific definition first and even then I might not be able to determine if it is possible or not.

Atheism: it's not just for communists any more!
America July 4 1776 - November 8 2016 RIP
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