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Why atheism?
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Regret
One Among Many

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Location: Drifting off around the bend

Why atheism?

Most questions on here are directed at religious people, given this, I decided to question the atheists.

Why atheism over religion? Why do you believe that there is no God? Why not agnostic at the least?

It seems to me that a stance such as atheism takes a decent amount of faith in the absence of such a figure, as the absence of evidence cannot be held as evidence.

In my opinion, atheism presents itself as a possible stumbling block to discovery and advancement as it is based in an assumption that is just as untestable as the opposing assumption. I do not believe it necessary to consider the possibility of God as an explanation in scientific research just because it is possible, but I believe the absolute denial of the possibility is illogical and poorly rationalized.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 07:18 PM
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Shakyamunison
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Technically, am I an atheist because I do not believe in a god, if it is defined as a supernatural male being worshiped as the creator of the universe? I do believe that the universe is a living being that we are a part of, that I call God for continents sake. So, were would you categories me?


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 07:28 PM
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Da Pittman
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For me it more because of human nature and seeing how people use religion and God as an excuse to do about anything. There are so many religions in this world and more made up everyday, even the older ones are being revised on a daily basis so how can this be a truth from “one that knows all” if it has to change.

The concept of God is much like a Sci-Fi novel that one person has all this power and has this divine plan of all of its creations is just absurd to me. I find more belief that there is a higher being with powers or technology that is responsible for life but not a God, much the way an ant would look up to a human.

Relying on the writings and accounts of people that thought that anything they didn’t understand was the power of some unseen god or spirit when it was a simple everyday occurrence or a trick of the eye like heat rising from the ground looks like water. This makes any account suspicious to me and unreliable.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 07:29 PM
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Regret
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quote: (post)
Originally posted by Shakyamunison
Technically, am I an atheist because I do not believe in a god, if it is defined as a supernatural male being worshiped as the creator of the universe? I do believe that the universe is a living being that we are a part of, that I call God for continents sake. So, were would you categories me?
I would not categorize Buddhists as atheist in my view of atheism. I think the term needs to be slightly redefined as I think the term was created in a civilization where religions such as Buddhism were not present.

quote:
Theology
1 The study of the nature of God and religious truth; rational inquiry into religious questions.
2 A system or school of opinions concerning God and religious questions: Protestant theology; Jewish theology.
3 A course of specialized religious study usually at a college or seminary.


Definitions 1 and 2 should be altered to have and/or such that:

1 The study of the nature of God and/or religious truth; rational inquiry into religious questions.
2 A system or school of opinions concerning God and/or religious questions: Protestant theology; Jewish theology.

I believe Buddhism would be defined as a theology, thus Buddhist Theology is an accurate term I believe.

Perhaps I should restate my subject to atheologists that have a atheistic stance?


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 07:47 PM
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Regret
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quote: (post)
Originally posted by ThePittman
For me it more because of human nature and seeing how people use religion and God as an excuse to do about anything. There are so many religions in this world and more made up everyday, even the older ones are being revised on a daily basis so how can this be a truth from “one that knows all” if it has to change.

The concept of God is much like a Sci-Fi novel that one person has all this power and has this divine plan of all of its creations is just absurd to me. I find more belief that there is a higher being with powers or technology that is responsible for life but not a God, much the way an ant would look up to a human.

Relying on the writings and accounts of people that thought that anything they didn’t understand was the power of some unseen god or spirit when it was a simple everyday occurrence or a trick of the eye like heat rising from the ground looks like water. This makes any account suspicious to me and unreliable.
But as to the denial of the possibility, why is this view held? Skepticism and suspicion I can respect, but they are not absolute. I am not referencing religions in any manner, only the possibility of the existence of God. Religious skepticism and disbelief hold much more validity for me than atheism, which I find to be irrational.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 07:54 PM
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Ordo
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quote: (post)
Originally posted by Regret
But as to the denial of the possibility, why is this view held? Skepticism and suspicion I can respect, but they are not absolute. I am not referencing religions in any manner, only the possibility of the existence of God. Religious skepticism and disbelief hold much more validity for me than atheism, which I find to be irrational.


You misinterperet atheism and agnosticism.

Agnositcs don't have an answer. They don't want to prove or disprove existance of gods. Many just don't think the question matters.

An athiest thinks that no gods exist. That doesn't mean that any they deny total possibility. The same holds true for religion. Religious people have to rationally concede that there is a possibility that no god exists.

Personally, most of my beliefs come from a progression basically stating that religions were false pretenses made around personal interpreations of percieved gods. In my opinion the only reason that religion is still around is because people choose to teach it from birth. Therefore it would be my personal opinion that if a god existed (which is both irrational and contradictory to every other aspect of existance) the probability that we here on Earth have a proper religiondescription of that god is about as close to 0 as you can get.

There come a point, in all rational thought, where if the probability approaces zero so much that your functial probability becomes 0. The intellectual proabalilty is still a physical number, and you have to admit that, but for all intents and purposes, god is fake.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:04 PM
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Da Pittman
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quote: (post)
Originally posted by Regret
But as to the denial of the possibility, why is this view held? Skepticism and suspicion I can respect, but they are not absolute. I am not referencing religions in any manner, only the possibility of the existence of God. Religious skepticism and disbelief hold much more validity for me than atheism, which I find to be irrational.
Religion and the belief in God go hand and hand, trying to separate them is not possible. It is the religion that says what God is and the rules to follow, it’s like the chicken and the egg and which came first.

The denial of the possibility of God can also go both ways, who to say that someone that believes can’t have the possibility that God doesn’t exist and what they have believed all their life is false. Most Atheists that I know would believe if shown some type of real proof that he exists and I’ve never seen anything of such. It would be hard pressed to show this evidence because of the twisted nature of some believers and twisting logic and facts to suit their purpose so it would have to be more irrefutable proof.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:05 PM
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Da Pittman
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quote: (post)
Originally posted by Alliance
There come a point, in all rational thought, where if the probability approaces zero so much that your functial probability becomes 0. The intellectual proabalilty is still a physical number, and you have to admit that, but for all intents and purposes, god is fake.
Very well said thumb up


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:07 PM
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Ordo
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Thanks, I've thougut this through a lot over the years.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:08 PM
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Shakyamunison
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However, my religion does not worship a God. I personally believe in a God but other members would consider themselves as atheists.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:08 PM
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Ordo
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Regret, also don't forget that there are degrees of atheism as well, I'm weak athiest, which is basically an agnostic that opens his eyes ninja.

Like in any religion (in this case religious pilosophy) the radical elements do not reflect well on the moderate majority.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:11 PM
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Peach
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The simple and short of it, for me, is that I find the idea of some higher being controlling everything silly and irrational. There is more to it, and it's mostly due to a lack of evidence to show otherwise (and remember that burden of proof is on the one making the positive claim), but that is largely why I do not believe in any sort of god or religion.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:12 PM
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Regret
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quote: (post)
Originally posted by Alliance
You misinterperet atheism and agnosticism.

Agnositcs don't have an answer. They don't want to prove or disprove existance of gods. Many just don't think the question matters.

An athiest thinks that no gods exist. That doesn't mean that any they deny total possibility. The same holds true for religion. Religious people have to rationally concede that there is a possibility that no god exists.

Personally, most of my beliefs come from a progression basically stating that religions were false pretenses made around personal interpreations of percieved gods. In my opinion the only reason that religion is still around is because people choose to teach it from birth. Therefore it would be my personal opinion that if a god existed (which is both irrational and contradictory to every other aspect of existance) the probability that we here on Earth have a proper religiondescription of that god is about as close to 0 as you can get.

There come a point, in all rational thought, where if the probability approaces zero so much that your functial probability becomes 0. The intellectual proabalilty is still a physical number, and you have to admit that, but for all intents and purposes, god is fake.


I am not misinterpreting. I am speaking to the absolute denial, and I know many absolute atheists. In my experience, atheists I have met tend towards the absolute, or true, atheist position. I would classify you as borderline atheist, as your view is agnostic with a more rational stance on the subject causing your position to be much closer to atheism than to theism, imo.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:12 PM
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Kayne Archeron
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it's an interesting thought though... are creatures like us, with our intellectual and imaginative possibilities, really the products of chance?

Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:16 PM
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Ordo
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I don't consider myself agnostic and calling me one would not be correct. I'm athiest, however I am rational and have a stance that is not confrontational. However, if a person walked up to me on the street and said do you believe in god, I would say flatly "no."

Have you ever asked these "athiest" firends of yous to concede that there is an unnaturall small unnatural possibility that a god in some form exists. What did they say?

Can you personally deny the probability that a god does not exist?


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:17 PM
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Storm
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The road to atheism tends to be very personal and individual, based upon the specific circumstances of a person’ s life, experiences, and attitudes. As goes for theism.

Perhaps the most basic reason for not believing in any gods is the absence of good reasons for doing so.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:38 PM
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Ordo
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Thats right. Remeber, burden of proof is on those people of religion. There is no natural reason why god should exist or even thought to exist. God is an unnatural concept. The default positon should be atheism, but because of the pervasiveness of religion in socities...people view the situation the other way.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:42 PM
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Trickster
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I find that both flatout denial and blind faith are distateful positions to hold. There is no, nor will their ever be any, conclusive evidence on the existence of God.

However, if someone is going to hold one or the other, athiesm seems more rational than faith. When one decides that things for which there is no evidence, then they really have no basis to deny the existence of anything else. How can a theist deny the existence of fairies? An athiest has the benefit of being able to deny everything which cannot be proved.

(As an aside, being an athiest carries with it other more negative connotations. If someone refuses to accept things without proof, then can they decide what is right or wrong?)


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:44 PM
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Regret
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quote: (post)
Originally posted by Alliance
I don't consider myself agnostic and calling me one would not be correct. I'm athiest, however I am rational and have a stance that is not confrontational. However, if a person walked up to me on the street and said do you believe in god, I would say flatly "no."

Have you ever asked these "athiest" firends of yous to concede that there is an unnaturall small unnatural possibility that a god in some form exists. What did they say?

Can you personally deny the probability that a god does not exist?
The majority of them deny the possibility, but yes I see what you mean, none of them would make an absolute statement to God's nonexistence. They cite typical responses that diminish the probability of such an entity. They are well educated people, and their rationale

I would agree that there is a possibility that God does not exist. Perhaps all stances are agnostic with varying degrees. And pure atheism and pure theism are merely points along this agnostic continuum. Perhaps without evidence to either stance, true theism and atheism are impossible.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:46 PM
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WanderingDroid
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My take?

Neither Religion or Atheism is above each other in my world. Period! Live with it.


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Old Post Oct 3rd, 2006 08:47 PM
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