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Main Discussion Zone => General Religious Discussion => Topic started by: epidemic on August 19, 2013, 06:27:58 AM

Title: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 19, 2013, 06:27:58 AM
The claim is when push comes to shove they almost always conceed that there is some freakishly remote chance of a god or gods.  In order to be atheist do you need to absolutely deny the possibility of a god or gods?

if you accept the minute remote possibility of god does that not put you in the agnostic camp?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 19, 2013, 06:36:14 AM
A gnostic atheist is one who is 100% sure that there are no gods. An agnostic atheist is someone who isn't sure that gods don't exist, but doesn't believe in them. Both are atheists.
Being agnostic regarding belief in gods is like saying your car has wheels when asked what brand it is. Gnosticism refers only to knowledge; not belief.
EDIT: As for the "no atheists in foxholes" thing, tell your friend he/she might want to do a quick search on Google.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: William on August 19, 2013, 06:44:55 AM
Some kind of being with superior technology who might have had some input to our existence - maybe - I'm conscious of the need to be open minded but it is a very long shot.

BibleGod, Jesus, Allah, Yahweh, Ganesh or any of scriptural/mythical gods we've invented so far - not a snowball's chance in hell - I'm full bore atheist with respect to all of them - tending towards militant atheist because I'm fed up with all this nonsense and the breeding ground for BS created by religious tolerance.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 19, 2013, 07:05:03 AM
A gnostic atheist is one who is 100% sure that there are no gods. An agnostic atheist is someone who isn't sure that gods don't exist, but doesn't believe in them. Both are atheists.
Being agnostic regarding belief in gods is like saying your car has wheels when asked what brand it is. Gnosticism refers only to knowledge; not belief.
EDIT: As for the "no atheists in foxholes" thing, tell your friend he/she might want to do a quick search on Google.

why would an agnostic atheist not simply be rolled into the agnostic catagory?

a Gnostic Atheist would seem to be a very rare fish.  Only because it implies more knowledge than a person could have.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 19, 2013, 07:09:49 AM
why would an agnostic atheist not simply be rolled into the agnostic catagory?

Because, as I explained:
Being agnostic regarding belief in gods is like saying your car has wheels when asked what brand it is. Gnosticism refers only to knowledge; not belief.
Try fully reading my post next time.

a Gnostic Atheist would seem to be a very rare fish.  Only because it implies more knowledge than a person could have.

I am a gnostic atheist (lowercase; it's not a proper noun) because, by my definition of a god, gods cannot exist. I do not require more knowledge than I already have.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 19, 2013, 07:56:01 AM
I am a gnostic atheist (lowercase; it's not a proper noun) because, by my definition of a god, gods cannot exist. I do not require more knowledge than I already have.

I was going to argue with you, then I read "by my definition".  Hmmm,  interesting.  I still think it is a little strange (not considering the possibility that your definition could be wrong) but now I see where you are coming from. 
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: bertatberts on August 19, 2013, 10:05:49 AM
Mine isn't anybodies definition, I'm 99.99999(ad-infinitum) sure that no god/gods, demons/ devils, orks/fairies etc ...  Exist.
And the reason for that most minuscule of doubts is because I cannot travel the entire universe nor be in every place at the same time to look for any, it would be nonsensical to, no infantile to say with certainty that god/gods don't exist. Considering the above reason. We are all agnostic-atheists. I don't actual doubt it, but it would be foolish to say I was certain. Only religious people claim certainty.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 19, 2013, 10:34:21 AM
Mine isn't anybodies definition, I'm 99.99999(ad-infinitum) sure that no god/gods, demons/ devils, orks/fairies etc ...  Exist.
And the reason for that most minuscule of doubts is because I cannot travel the entire universe nor be in every place at the same time to look for any, it would be nonsensical to, no infantile to say with certainty that god/gods don't exist. Considering the above reason. We are all agnostic-atheists. I don't actual doubt it, but it would be foolish to say I was certain. Only religious people claim certainty.


I am inclined to agree with you.  However, I am only 99.99995% sure there is no god/gods, fairies...

I don't know how to address this with my friend though, he believes 99.999999999999999 leaves open the .00000000000001% making us agnostic.  In the strictest definition of atheist I am not sure that he is wrong.  Very few people would claim that there is absolutely no possibility of god.   but like the WTC being blown up by the illuminatti with thermite charges I am confident that there is likely no god.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jdawg70 on August 19, 2013, 10:38:31 AM
I am inclined to agree with you.  However, I am only 99.99995% sure there is no god/gods, fairies...

I don't know how to address this with my friend though, he believes 99.999999999999999 leaves open the .00000000000001% making us agnostic.  In the strictest definition of atheist I am not sure that he is wrong.  Very few people would claim that there is absolutely no possibility of god.   but like the WTC being blown up by the illuminatti with thermite charges I am confident that there is likely no god.
Could you ask your friend if s/he can think of any claim that could be reasonably considered as true or false with absolute 100% confidence?

A tangential nitpick @ bertatberts:
99.99999(ad infinitum)% is equal to 100%.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 19, 2013, 10:54:43 AM
I am inclined to agree with you.  However, I am only 99.99995% sure there is no god/gods, fairies...

I don't know how to address this with my friend though, he believes 99.999999999999999 leaves open the .00000000000001% making us agnostic.  In the strictest definition of atheist I am not sure that he is wrong.  Very few people would claim that there is absolutely no possibility of god.   but like the WTC being blown up by the illuminatti with thermite charges I am confident that there is likely no god.
Could you ask your friend if s/he can think of any claim that could be reasonably considered as true or false with absolute 100% confidence?

A tangential nitpick @ bertatberts:
99.99999(ad infinitum)% is equal to 100%.

In a round about way I just did that.  I asked him if he believed that the strictest definition of theist was possible?  I asked if a theist could be swayed by irrefutable proof.   

Which is what we are talking about with the atheist 99.999999999999%  thing.  If god were to start healing amputees and speaking to us in a credible irrefutable way atheists would become believers. 

Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: neopagan on August 19, 2013, 11:03:38 AM
^^^ seems like a simple thing for an omnimax being to do - worked for Paul and others in their mystical yarns.  Why stop making such appearances?  However, just because I see it, doesn't mean I worship it... that's another step
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 19, 2013, 12:15:39 PM
^^^ seems like a simple thing for an omnimax being to do - worked for Paul and others in their mystical yarns.  Why stop making such appearances?  However, just because I see it, doesn't mean I worship it... that's another step

Recently I have figured out that god becoming apparent does not remove free will.   It just gives informed concent.   You now must decide whether you worship them and or risk hell.  With all the information you will probably make better decisions.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: neopagan on August 19, 2013, 12:29:01 PM
I don't understand the supposed universal need to worship something. Heard a pastor say recently we will all worship or make something a god. Of course, his pick was skygod from the list of irrational items he named like money, sex, fame, McDonalds Smurf toys (ok I added that one)

Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: bertatberts on August 19, 2013, 12:40:45 PM
A tangential nitpick @ bertatberts:
99.99999(ad infinitum)% is equal to 100%.
Not quite it does leave the very very smallest of margins, even if it is negligible, and insignificant.  And that is only because it would be foolish to have absolute 100% certainty. As you intimate yourself. I am not prepared, to say with certainty that gods do not exist. for the reasons I gave in my previous post.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 19, 2013, 01:11:17 PM
I don't understand the supposed universal need to worship something. Heard a pastor say recently we will all worship or make something a god. Of course, his pick was skygod from the list of irrational items he named like money, sex, fame, McDonalds Smurf toys (ok I added that one)

I think there is a difference between liking to go skiing and worshiping it.  I don't think he is right at all.  I have many hobbies but none of them are worshipped by me.  I like to dabble.  I like money but I do not pursue it insanely at the expense of other things.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: ParkingPlaces on August 19, 2013, 03:08:56 PM
Tell your friend that I am 100% certain that there are no gods. I might be wrong, but until proven otherwise, I'll treat the universe and my life as if there are none whatsoever.

I have been known to do the bertatberts 99.99999999% thing, just to keep the locals off my back. But I think I would rather say I'm positive that there are no gods, but I'll also say that I'll admit I'm wrong if someone can show otherwise. It accomplishes the same thing without my needing to compromise for the sake of logic, or whatever it is that claims that we can't be certain. Which of course we can't. Except me, in this case. In a round about way.

If there is a god, he knows where to find me. If there isn't a god, I've no idea where to find him.

Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jynnan tonnix on August 19, 2013, 03:19:33 PM
Wouldn't this work in reverse for theists?

I know it's rare around here to find one who will admit to the possibility that god does not exist, and that their relationship with him, or what have you, could be a delusion. But there are also a lot out there who will concede that there is no way they can know for sure, but that it resonates for them, makes them feel good, and thus is real for them. And I suspect that there are many others who simply won't look at the evidence (or lack thereof), at least partially because they are afraid of what they might find.

There's another thread somewhere around here which touches on this question; that of why, if theists are so convinced that an omniscient god is watching them 24/7, they manage to ever commit any sins.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jdawg70 on August 19, 2013, 03:39:30 PM
A tangential nitpick @ bertatberts:
99.99999(ad infinitum)% is equal to 100%.
Not quite it does leave the very very smallest of margins, even if it is negligible, and insignificant.  And that is only because it would be foolish to have absolute 100% certainty. As you intimate yourself. I am not prepared, to say with certainty that gods do not exist. for the reasons I gave in my previous post.
It's really just a mathematical nitpick.  0.9999(infinitely repeating) is exactly equal to 1, ergo, 99.999999(infinitely repeating) is exactly equal to 100.

I recognize what you're saying though...I'm just being a math-Nazi at this point :)
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Graybeard on August 19, 2013, 04:33:54 PM
A gnostic atheist is one who is 100% sure that there are no gods. An agnostic atheist is someone who isn't sure that gods don't exist, but doesn't believe in them. Both are atheists.
Being agnostic regarding belief in gods is like saying your car has wheels when asked what brand it is. Gnosticism refers only to knowledge; not belief.
EDIT: As for the "no atheists in foxholes" thing, tell your friend he/she might want to do a quick search on Google.

I dislike the idea of qualifying "atheist". I see it as being dead or pregnant - you either are or you aren't. If you deny that there are gods, you are an atheist[1]

If you concede, at any level, that there might be gods, then 'agnostic' is your label. 

If you believe there are gods, then you are a theist. The theists then divide themselves into various religions and the religions then divide themselves into sects and the sects have off-shoots, etc., until you arrive at the present position, where everyone imagines their own god, or takes a view on what their god is like.

Edit to correct deist to theist (see below.)
 1. This is always worth repeating: "I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours." --Todd Pataky
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 19, 2013, 04:37:21 PM
I dislike the idea of qualifying "atheist".
<snip>

We're going to disagree on this, no matter what either of us says. Ergo, I will not discuss it with you.

If you believe there are gods, then you are a deist. The deists then divide themselves into various religions and the religions then divide themselves into sects and the sects have off-shoots, etc., until you arrive at the present position, where everyone imagines their own god, or takes a view on what their god is like.

I think you mean "theist". Deists, AFAIK, are a group of theists (who believe in a hands-off god).
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Graybeard on August 19, 2013, 04:46:18 PM

I think you mean "theist". Deists, AFAIK, are a group of theists (who believe in a hands-off god).

Thanks. I do. I will amend my post.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Willie on August 19, 2013, 11:32:46 PM
I think that way too much is read into this idea of being 100% certain of something. The conflation of certainty with unreasoning belief is the basis of the frequent accusations that atheists are closed minded, or that we think we're omniscient, or that atheism is as faith-based as theism. But being sure about something, and being closed to reason, are not the same thing.

This may be easier to see when considering a more mundane question than the existence of gods. For example, I am 100% certain that Voldemort, as described in the Harry Potter stories (as opposed to some other person who has only superficial similarities, or who is merely named Voldemort, but is not THE Voldemort) is a fictional character, not an actual person. What this means is that I don't think there is any possibility of the Voldemort character being real. I am not on the fence. I am not "seeking". This does not, however, mean that I am closed to reason, or that I deem myself omniscient. If presented with credible evidence of Voldemort being real, I might become only 99% certain, or 50% certain, or even reverse my position entirely, depending on the strength of the evidence. Encountering such evidence would come as a complete surprise. I have zero expectation that any such evidence exists, and I certainly see no reason to actively hunt for it. But if it turns up, I'll consider it.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: LoriPinkAngel on August 20, 2013, 12:21:16 AM
Wouldn't this work in reverse for theists?

I know it's rare around here to find one who will admit to the possibility that god does not exist, and that their relationship with him, or what have you, could be a delusion.

I must admit that all the while I considered myself a believer I always admitted any "relationship" I had with god was either very one-sided or quite dysfunctional because I never had any real sense of communication or feelings.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 20, 2013, 06:56:40 AM
If you concede, at any level, that there might be gods, then 'agnostic' is your label. 

So in essence you are saying that reserving judgement at any level makes you an agnostic.  So 99.999999999999999999999999... is basically an agnostic?  Then my friend is right that there are virtually no atheists. 

Of course that would apply to theists as well,  if they are open to irrefutable evidence then they are not theists. 

Would it be true to say an atheist that is open to irrefutable evidence is not an atheist and a theist that is open to irrefutable evidence is not a theist?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Mrjason on August 20, 2013, 07:16:20 AM
Would it be true to say an atheist that is open to irrefutable evidence is not an atheist and a theist that is open to irrefutable evidence is not a theist?

Atheism, like theism, is a genuinely held belief. Whilst an atheist may be open to irrefutable evidence until that evidence is presented the belief that there are no gods is prevalent one, ergo he/she who holds that beleif is an atheist.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 20, 2013, 07:20:22 AM
Atheism, like theism, is a genuinely held belief. Whilst an atheist may be open to irrefutable evidence until that evidence is presented the belief that there are no gods is prevalent one, ergo he/she who holds that beleif is an atheist.

If atheism is a belief, then not collecting stamps is a hobby and bald is a hair color.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Mrjason on August 20, 2013, 07:45:32 AM
Atheism, like theism, is a genuinely held belief. Whilst an atheist may be open to irrefutable evidence until that evidence is presented the belief that there are no gods is prevalent one, ergo he/she who holds that belief is an atheist.

If atheism is a belief, then not collecting stamps is a hobby and bald is a hair color.

I take your point but i don't think the belief can be equated to non-philately.
I was taking the "genuinely held belief" from equality legislation.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 20, 2013, 07:49:53 AM
I take your point
<snip>

Clearly you don't, since you're still referring to atheism as a belief. Atheism is the rejection of the theist claim at best; simple non-belief at worst.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Mrjason on August 20, 2013, 08:12:39 AM
I take your point
<snip>

Clearly you don't, since you're still referring to atheism as a belief. Atheism is the rejection of the theist claim at best; simple non-belief at worst.

I admit I'm a little sketchy about what constitutes belief. You can not prove a negative so if you can not "know" something you must believe it?

as i said

I was taking the "genuinely held belief" from equality legislation.

Quote from:  EA 2010
Section 10 Religion or belief
(1) Religion means any religion and a reference to religion includes a reference to a lack of
religion.
(2) Belief means any religious or philosophical belief and a reference to belief includes a
reference to a lack of belief.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: naemhni on August 20, 2013, 09:01:24 AM
I admit I'm a little sketchy about what constitutes belief.

Atheism is the null hypothesis regarding one particular concept: the existence of deities.  It is not a positive claim in and of itself.

To take a simpler and (hopefully) less controversial comparison:  I am a biologist who specializes in Amazonian amphibian species.  One day, I make a claim that, in my most recent exploration of the Amazon, I have discovered a new species of frog that lives in the rainforest.  I describe its characteristics... I say that males average five inches in length and weigh an average of eight ounces, that females are slightly smaller, that the species has orange skin with green spots, that females are silent but that males make a particular call during mating season, etc etc etc.  I present all of this to my colleagues in biology.

Their response will be to ask me to present evidence of my claim so that they can review it and determine the validity of my claim.  If I offer no evidence, then their response will be to reject my claim -- which is NOT the same thing as saying that my claim is wrong.  It is merely an assertion that I have not met my burden of proof, and if I should later offer compelling evidence that I have discovered a new frog, my colleagues will reevaluate their position.

Get it?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: bertatberts on August 20, 2013, 09:13:31 AM
You cannot lack belief and at the same time believe a thing, the two are mutually exclusive.
"An atheist is not something that you so much are. Rather, it's something you are from a theistic perspective. Ultimately the word only says what you're not, that the term "theist" is not applicable to you." - unknown (from someone here can't remember who.)
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Mrjason on August 20, 2013, 09:22:02 AM
I admit I'm a little sketchy about what constitutes belief.

Atheism is the null hypothesis regarding one particular concept: the existence of deities.  It is not a positive claim in and of itself.

To take a simpler and (hopefully) less controversial comparison:  I am a biologist who specializes in Amazonian amphibian species.  One day, I make a claim that, in my most recent exploration of the Amazon, I have discovered a new species of frog that lives in the rainforest.  I describe its characteristics... I say that males average five inches in length and weigh an average of eight ounces, that females are slightly smaller, that the species has orange skin with green spots, that females are silent but that males make a particular call during mating season, etc etc etc.  I present all of this to my colleagues in biology.

Their response will be to ask me to present evidence of my claim so that they can review it and determine the validity of my claim.  If I offer no evidence, then their response will be to reject my claim -- which is NOT the same thing as saying that my claim is wrong.  It is merely an assertion that I have not met my burden of proof, and if I should later offer compelling evidence that I have discovered a new frog, my colleagues will reevaluate their position.

Get it?

not really.

I think the essence of what you're saying is that a belief in nothing is not a belief
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 20, 2013, 09:41:27 AM
I admit I'm a little sketchy about what constitutes belief. You can not prove a negative so if you can not "know" something you must believe it?

The very best you could hope for is to use that argument against gnostic atheists, and even then, it's flimsy at best.
Personally, I KNOW for a fact that there are no gods simply because my definition of a god cannot exist. Ergo, gods, by my definition, which is the only one that matters to me in this context, cannot exist.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 20, 2013, 09:42:17 AM
I think the essence of what you're saying is that a belief in nothing is not a belief

It's not a belief in nothing. Atheism is lack of belief.
Really, is that so hard to understand?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Mrjason on August 20, 2013, 10:52:20 AM
I think the essence of what you're saying is that a belief in nothing is not a belief

It's not a belief in nothing. Atheism is lack of belief.
Really, is that so hard to understand?

We're coming at the same position from a different angle. Legally atheism falls into the protected characteristic of belief in the UK. As does climate change.

How would you define belief?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 20, 2013, 10:55:38 AM
We're coming at the same position from a different angle. Legally atheism falls into the protected characteristic of belief in the UK. As does climate change.

Climate change is not a belief either, unless you define belief as "accepting what science has concluded based on all available evidence".

How would you define belief?

Oh, I don't know... How about... belief? You know, actually believing in something, rather than not believing.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Mrjason on August 20, 2013, 11:02:20 AM
We're coming at the same position from a different angle. Legally atheism falls into the protected characteristic of belief in the UK. As does climate change.

Climate change is not a belief either, unless you define belief as "accepting what science has concluded based on all available evidence".

As I said, it is legally a belief.

Quote from:  [url=http://www.shef.ac.uk/hr/equality/focus/equalityact/protected
http://www.shef.ac.uk/hr/equality/focus/equalityact/protected[/url]]This characteristic includes having a religion or belief and not having one. It does not include political beliefs, scientific beliefs, or supporting football teams. However, there has been a tribunal case where a belief in man-made climate change met the threshold of the belief being `cogent, serious and worthy of respect in a democratic society.´ We have to be mindful of this threshold when determining if a person´s belief falls under the protection of the Equality Act. It is important to note that minority religions are treated with the same consideration and respect as more prominent religions.

How would you define belief?

Oh, I don't know... How about... belief? You know, actually believing in something, rather than not believing.

I believe that there are no gods and as such I will not act as if there are gods. Does that qualify as a belief?

edit; I'm not doing this to piss you off, I'm writing an employment law paper and am interested in the rational behind "belief" arguments.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 20, 2013, 11:54:27 AM
As I said, it is legally a belief.

And so what if it is? The point of defining it as a belief is to give it the same privileges as actual beliefs. It doesn't mean it actually is a belief.

I believe that there are no gods and as such I will not act as if there are gods. Does that qualify as a belief?

That's your belief (although I doubt that's what you actually believe), but it doesn't define atheism as a whole.

edit; I'm not doing this to piss you off, I'm writing an employment law paper and am interested in the rational behind "belief" arguments.

In that case I advise you to learn the difference between "rational" and "rationale".
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: ParkingPlaces on August 20, 2013, 12:17:26 PM
If someone says that it is possible to squeeze a gallon of oil out of a penny, and you know that is not true, are you then saddled with the belief that is impossible to get a gallon of oil out of a penny, or is the oil thing merely someone else's claim that you have dismissed. If it is the latter, you do not have a belief on the subject, merely an opinion.

I happen to believe that there are members of the world-wide economic community in which I reside that do not have my best interests at heart. That colors my view of economic aspects of my life. Whether it is true or not. But my lack of a bellef in a god does not color my reality in a similar way. It merely removes deities from my list of things to consider in life. That is why it is not a belief.

Atheism is a non-process. The word tells others that those of us who identify as such do not take gods into consideration. The word says nothing else about us.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 20, 2013, 01:03:09 PM
I think the essence of what you're saying is that a belief in nothing is not a belief

It's not a belief in nothing. Atheism is lack of belief.
Really, is that so hard to understand?

Atheist -  "There absolutely is no god"
Theist - "Prove it"
Atheist - "I have no proof"
Theist -  "So you (believe) there is no god"

Theist -  "There absolutely is a god"
Atheist - "Prove it"
Theist - "I have not Proof"
Atheist - " So you (believe) in god"
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 20, 2013, 01:14:07 PM
Atheist -  "There absolutely is no god"
Theist - "Prove it"
Atheist - "I have no proof"
Theist -  "So you (believe) there is no god"

While most atheists fall under the "agnostic atheist" category, in which case that conversation wouldn't happen, I do not. However, I do, in fact, have proof that gods (by my definition) do not exist. Regardless, that conversation is incomplete. After the theist claims that atheism is a belief, the atheist usually demolishes that argument with a comparison between not believing and not doing something else.

Theist -  "There absolutely is a god"
Atheist - "Prove it"
Theist - "I have not Proof"
Atheist - " So you (believe) in god"

That conversation is complete. Theism incorporates belief, by its very definition.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jdawg70 on August 20, 2013, 01:16:53 PM
Atheist -  "There absolutely is no god"
Theist - "Prove it"
Atheist - "I have no proof"
Theist -  "So you (believe) there is no god"
Atheist - "Well, I simply do not have the belief that there is a god.  From a practical semantics standpoint, you can go ahead and equate that with me believing that there is no god.  The reason that I do not have belief that there is a Quborta isn't because I have positive evidence to suggest the lack of existence in a Quborta, but because there is no positive evidence to suggest the existence of a Quborta.  Frankly, I would never bring up my lack of belief in the existence of Quborta except in response to someone proclaiming that a Quborta actually exists.  I apologize for just coming up to you in a vacuum of conversation and expressing a negative claim.  That was kind of rude of me."

Theist -  "There absolutely is a god"
Atheist - "Prove it"
Theist - "I have not Proof"
Atheist - " So you (believe) in god"
Theist - "No, I do not have no belief that there is a god.  Wait, that didn't make sense.  I guess that since I'm the positive claimant, the burden of proof lies upon me.  Lacking said proof, I really should take the position that I do not have a belief that there is a god.  My bad."
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jdawg70 on August 20, 2013, 01:17:54 PM
While most atheists fall under the "agnostic atheist" category, in which case that conversation wouldn't happen, I do not. However, I do, in fact, have proof that gods (by my definition) do not exist. Regardless, that conversation is incomplete. After the theist claims that atheism is a belief, the atheist usually demolishes that argument with a comparison between not believing and not doing something else.
Could you provide this definition?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 20, 2013, 01:26:09 PM
Could you provide this definition?

One Above All's definition of a god:
Omnipotent
Omniscient

One Above All's definition of a god worthy of worship:
Omnipotent
Omniscient
Benevolent

I assume I don't have to explain the problems with any of those three qualities, not to mention the problems when all three are combined.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 20, 2013, 01:41:48 PM
Could you provide this definition?

One Above All's definition of a god:
Omnipotent
Omniscient

One Above All's definition of a god worthy of worship:
Omnipotent
Omniscient
Benevolent

I assume I don't have to explain the problems with any of those three qualities, not to mention the problems when all three are combined.


Omnipotent
Omniscient
Benevolent

are not mutually exclusive.

I tell my kid they have to eat their limabeans and broccoli, then I tell them they can't have ice cream today.  80 years of torment here on earth is but being denied icecream for a day in eternity.  I don't believe in god or heaven but if it did exist the promise of eternal life in paradise would pretty much make a life of torture and suffereing be akin to a skinned knee.  My kid eating the limabeans may well be the suffering for a good reason and denying them ice cream can be equally beneficial.  Perhaps a life time of suffering provides some benefit as yet unseen:o
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jdawg70 on August 20, 2013, 01:57:37 PM
One Above All's definition of a god:
Omnipotent
Omniscient

One Above All's definition of a god worthy of worship:
Omnipotent
Omniscient
Benevolent

I assume I don't have to explain the problems with any of those three qualities, not to mention the problems when all three are combined.


Omnipotent
Omniscient
Benevolent

are not mutually exclusive.

I tell my kid they have to eat their limabeans and broccoli, then I tell them they can't have ice cream today.  80 years of torment here on earth is but being denied icecream for a day in eternity.  I don't believe in god or heaven but if it did exist the promise of eternal life in paradise would pretty much make a life of torture and suffereing be akin to a skinned knee.  My kid eating the limabeans may well be the suffering for a good reason and denying them ice cream can be equally beneficial.  Perhaps a life time of suffering provides some benefit as yet unseen:o
Withholding ice cream is one thing; withholding protection from being gang-raped is a bit different.  Giving your kid lima beans is one thing; giving them stomach cancer is a bit different.

You can't protect your children from every scraped knee they will ever receive.  But is it because you simply don't want to, or is it because you lack omnipotence to manifest that reality?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 20, 2013, 02:13:45 PM
Omnipotent
Omniscient
Benevolent

are not mutually exclusive.
<snip>

Apparently I was wrong.

This universe works exactly as it would be expected if there were no god.
A benevolent and omnipotent deity would NEVER allow suffering. Being omnipotent, it could end suffering without harming anyone. Being benevolent, it would do so. Suffering exists. Ergo, an omnipotent and benevolent god doesn't exist.
Do I need to go any further?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: ParkingPlaces on August 20, 2013, 02:54:03 PM
A benevolent god would be kind enough to make lima beans taste like ice cream. And make them creamier too.

If I were a god, I would insist on it.

Lima beans taste like lima beans. Hence, no god. Or at least not a benevolent one.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 20, 2013, 02:59:31 PM
A benevolent god would be kind enough to make lima beans taste like ice cream. And make them creamier too.

If I were a god, I would insist on it.

Lima beans taste like lima beans. Hence, no god. Or at least not a benevolent one.

Hey, I'm benevolent. Lots of people like lima beans. Just because you don't like them doesn't mean I don't exist.
On a related note, I don't like them either. A most unfortunate result of evolution, IMO.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jdawg70 on August 20, 2013, 03:04:49 PM
A benevolent god would be kind enough to make lima beans taste like ice cream. And make them creamier too.

If I were a god, I would insist on it.

Lima beans taste like lima beans. Hence, no god. Or at least not a benevolent one.

Beer: evidence that god loves us
Pabst Blue Ribbon: evidence that he is incompetent at showing that love
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: LoriPinkAngel on August 20, 2013, 05:17:16 PM
I like lima beans.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: LoriPinkAngel on August 20, 2013, 05:18:13 PM
I like beer.  I prefer dark beer.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 20, 2013, 08:06:21 PM
I don't know how you compare infinite paradise to a short of suffering.

after billion years in paradise how would one look back on the suffering over human life span

I know that I I look back on my scraped knee is a little boo boos that seem to be the worst thing to happen to me at the time and now I can barely remember them.  would a human lifetime of suffering amount to a hill of beans and talking about everlasting paradise?

I am not even saying it would not be a problem I just don't if god is excluded from being benevolence just because of 80 years on earth.   

Now infinite punishment for finite crimes comitted in 80 years that might be the nail in the coffin of benevolence!
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Nam on August 20, 2013, 08:47:54 PM
I think the first step is getting those who believe in a "god", to answer, what is "god"? Each individual theist who believes in a "god" has their own definition. Perhaps a group(s) of theists hold the same definition but if you get right down to it I bet each individual in said group(s) is different in some way to the others in their group.

But then is every theist who believe in a god sure if their god exists?

I doubt it.

So one could conclude "there are no theists[1] in foxholes".

-Nam
 1. who believe in a god
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 21, 2013, 07:54:40 AM
I think the first step is getting those who believe in a "god", to answer, what is "god"? Each individual theist who believes in a "god" has their own definition. Perhaps a group(s) of theists hold the same definition but if you get right down to it I bet each individual in said group(s) is different in some way to the others in their group.

But then is every theist who believe in a god sure if their god exists?

I doubt it.

So one could conclude "there are no theists[1] in foxholes".

-Nam
 1. who believe in a god

Oh you are right there.  I think theists in the strictest sense are few and far between when push comes to shove they question the existence of god.  My friend wants to use on atheists strictest definition to mean not a shread of doubt or room for doubt, if that standard applied to theists 99.9999999% of them probably fall into agnostic camp as well.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jaimehlers on August 21, 2013, 09:20:19 AM
I think the essence of what you're saying is that a belief in nothing is not a belief
Not believing in gods is not the same as believing in nothing.  The statement, "I do not believe in gods" does not say anything about what a person does believe.  Trying to define a person by their lack of belief in gods makes as little sense as defining them by their lack of belief in leprechauns.  Or in unicorns.

The reason atheism tends to be defined as a religious belief is so that it can't be discriminated against.  If atheism were not legally defined as a (religious) belief, then it would not be protected by the First Amendment, and thus governments could act against it.  It's legal hair-splitting more than anything, and doesn't represent the actual state of things.

The equivocation that "no belief" = "belief in nothing" is the reason atheists tend to be viewed as nihilistic.  However, since you can't define what an atheist does believe in with what they don't believe in, this ends up being a false equivocation.  Further, it also creates a false dilemma - namely, that a person who doesn't believe (in gods) actually believes in nothing.  There are many things to believe in that aren't gods.

For example, just about every moral principle is something that a person can believe in, even though it isn't an anthropomorphic entity.  Take truth; does it need to be represented by an anthropomorphic entity in order to be a valid, believable concept?  Do you need to have a God of Truth for truth to exist?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Tero on August 21, 2013, 05:06:37 PM
I did leave a kind of thin string to religion for whatever reason.  When asked about beliefs I would just say it was not relevant as religion makes little difference in behavior.

But then I took the final leap of faith into atheism. It was liberating. And I was over 45 then.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Traveler on August 21, 2013, 10:12:30 PM
I apologize if this has already been said ...

Atheism is about belief.

Agnosticism is about knowledge.

I am an atheist, in the sense that I do not believe in any god I've ever heard about. In fact, I believe that there are no gods, which is, I suppose, a slightly stronger statement.

I am an agnostic about there being something that might fit into the so-called spiritual realm. I do believe, in fact, very strongly, that whatever that thing might be, it will be simply an expansion on our knowledge of physics ... of how the world works.

I have absolutely NO belief in gods. None. I never have. No doubts, no recriminations, no second thoughts. I believe that the god concepts that have been stated by humans throughout history are completely and totally absurd. Some would say that makes me a strong atheist. My belief that there are no gods, as described by any humans so far, is as strong as my belief that there are no unicorns, no fairies, and no dragons. This is a strong enough belief that it is basically indistinguishable from knowledge. But I am a skeptic, a relatively logical person, and a stickler for the truth. And so I consider myself, above and beyond either agnostic or atheist labels, an open-minded skeptic. I will listen to any claims, but I am highly skeptical of all of them. Until, and unless, there is any actual evidence, you might as well call me an atheist, and the closer a god is to the Abrahamic god concept, the stronger my atheism. In other words, the bible, the koran, and the torah are, in my opinion, complete and utter bull. I am so very positive about that that I am willing to risk my "immortal soul." As far as I'm concerned, there is no risk whatsoever to that.

And to finalize this, I don't see how anyone can force belief. I challenge you to believe in Santa Claus. Can't do it, can you? That is how strong my disbelief is in god. Anyone who challenges me to try is barking up the wrong tree. Its a stupid idea, and a waste of my time.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Nam on August 21, 2013, 10:14:16 PM
"Atheism is about belief."

Belief in what?

-Nam
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: LoriPinkAngel on August 22, 2013, 07:44:35 AM
"Atheism is about belief."

Belief in what?

-Nam

Belief in nothing.  Like Seinfeld was the show about nothing.  Life just happens around us.  Let it unfold.   ;)
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 22, 2013, 07:50:52 AM
"Atheism is about belief."

Belief in what?

-Nam

Actually it is not belief in nothing.  It is belief that the people who contend god is real are wrong.  Once presented with the argument that god is real, and you can not disprove it, then it is a belief that these people and their sources are wrong.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Nam on August 22, 2013, 09:55:40 PM
What is "God"?

-Nam
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Azdgari on August 22, 2013, 11:59:40 PM
I still think it is a little strange (not considering the possibility that your definition could be wrong) ...

Definitions cannot ever be right or wrong.  That is not part of the meaning that a definition conveys.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Mrjason on August 27, 2013, 09:28:16 AM
As I said, it is legally a belief.

And so what if it is? The point of defining it as a belief is to give it the same privileges as actual beliefs. It doesn't mean it actually is a belief.

Ok so atheism isn't a belief in nothing it is an implied belief in;
This universe works exactly as it would be expected if there were no god.

Making it “cogent, serious and worthy of respect in a democratic society”
Therefore a protected charicteristic

I believe that there are no gods and as such I will not act as if there are gods. Does that qualify as a belief?

That's your belief (although I doubt that's what you actually believe), but it doesn't define atheism as a whole.

Please clarify this.

[
edit; I'm not doing this to piss you off, I'm writing an employment law paper and am interested in the rational behind "belief" arguments.

In that case I advise you to learn the difference between "rational" and "rationale".

This comes across as a tad petty.  ;)
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 27, 2013, 09:40:40 AM
Ok so atheism isn't a belief in nothing it is an implied belief in;
This universe works exactly as it would be expected if there were no god.

Making it “cogent, serious and worthy of respect in a democratic society”
Therefore a protected charicteristic

For the last time, atheism is not a belief. What I wrote is one of the many problems with an omnimax benevolent deity and our universe as we know it, and don't act like you didn't know it. I should smite you for that.

Please clarify this.

What's there to clarify? It's your belief. Atheism as a whole is something far simpler: the lack of belief in deities.

This comes across as a tad petty.  ;)

If you want to be taken seriously by everyone, you have to learn how to write. Trust me on that.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jaimehlers on August 27, 2013, 10:19:44 AM
I'm surprised that people are still arguing about whether atheism is a belief or not.

Look, I'll try to clarify this.  Atheism is the statement that whatever a person believes in, or believes to be true, deities do not factor into it.  That's all.  So yes, atheists do have beliefs (though not religious ones), but atheism itself is not one of those beliefs.

For example, I don't believe that the supernatural exists.  That's a statement about my beliefs, but it is not itself a belief, because it doesn't describe what I do believe in.  You could say that it helps to establish the boundaries, but only in a very rough sense.  You can't tell what an atheist believes merely because they are an atheist, in other words.  You can only tell what they don't believe.

I liken it to this math example - if you have a non-negative number, it doesn't tell you what the number actually is, it just tells you what the number isn't.

Does that help to resolve this dispute?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 27, 2013, 10:40:52 AM

For example, I don't believe that the supernatural exists.  That's a statement about my beliefs, but it is not itself a belief, because it doesn't describe what I do believe in.  You could say that it helps to establish the boundaries, but only in a very rough sense.  You can't tell what an atheist believes merely because they are an atheist, in other words.  You can only tell what they don't believe.

I liken it to this math example - if you have a non-negative number, it doesn't tell you what the number actually is, it just tells you what the number isn't.

Does that help to resolve this dispute?

But when someone proposes the idea that the supernatural exists,  I still think it relegates your postion to a likely well informed belief.  You believe the person proposing supernatural powers is wrong.  However you can not prove it.  I still think that is a belief.  Much like my catching a bullet I fired story.  I can not prove it and you can not disprove it.  Hence you believe I am lying.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Nam on August 27, 2013, 11:34:52 AM
Where do you get this "You can't prove or disprove it therefore you're a liar" from?

That's idiotic.

-Nam
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jaimehlers on August 27, 2013, 12:21:57 PM
But when someone proposes the idea that the supernatural exists,  I still think it relegates your postion to a likely well informed belief.
This is flat-out incorrect.  Beliefs are defined by what they are, not by what they are not.  This means that the existence of a belief does not (and more to the point, cannot) make its negation into another belief.  The mere existence of someone who believes in the supernatural does not make other people's lack of belief in the supernatural into an actual belief, in other words, which is what you are suggesting.

Quote from: epidemic
You believe the person proposing supernatural powers is wrong.  However you can not prove it.  I still think that is a belief.  Much like my catching a bullet I fired story.  I can not prove it and you can not disprove it.  Hence you believe I am lying.
Since it's impossible to prove a negative, why would you then think it would make sense to believe in that negative?

Furthermore, in your example, you are conflating two different things - your inability to provide evidence to support your claim (since we both know it's impossible to prove a negative) and the resulting belief that you are lying about it.  They are not the same thing, and thus your position is flawed.

----

By the way, I know it's possible to phrase something you don't believe in in such a way that it seems like you do believe in something.  For example, taking "I do not believe in the supernatural" and changing it to "I believe the supernatural does not exist".  But it is not an actual belief, because it's not believing in something.  In both cases, treating this like a belief is nonsensical, because it is essentially a "belief in nothing".  Even nihilism is a belief in something - that existence is senseless and pointless, and thus doesn't matter - but it's not a belief in nothing.

As I said in my earlier post, you can't define what someone does believe with things they don't believe.  You have to know what they actually believe, otherwise your position becomes flawed.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Astreja on August 27, 2013, 12:28:32 PM
Epidemic, "the supernatural" is a catch-all term for unexplained phenomena that appear to contradict reality as it is commonly experienced.  Moreover, they usually suffer from the problem of not being repeatable phenomena; hence, there is no easy way for a skeptic to obtain empirical confirmation or to determine the underlying mechanism of the event.

Not believing in a one-off extraordinary occurrence is reasonable, IMO.  Requesting supporting evidence isn't an allegation that the claimant has lied; it's saying "No, that's not enough for me to go on.  Got anything else?"
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 27, 2013, 12:30:56 PM
Am I the only one who thinks that epidemic is lying about being an atheist? I wouldn't be surprised if he turned around and said something like... "You know what, christianity makes sense! I'm a born-again christian!"
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 27, 2013, 12:36:39 PM
well I guess we are just on different pages here.   

I say I have been teleported by an alien,   you ask me to prove it, I say I can not.

You say teleportation is not possible.  I say prove I have not been teleportation is not possible.

In this imaginary scenario assume I actually was teleported.  just because you can not prove a negative does not make it false.

Even though your convinced I have never been teleported you are wrong.  is your postion a belief that is wrong or is it an errant fact?

I think most everything I have an opinion or think I know is probably more of a belief than hard core fact I have been told that lions are from africa and alligators live in some north carolina swamps.  I believe these things to be true I have lots of things that are hear say but I have not personally verified either.  there is no reason for someone to lie about these things so I have a very firm belief but....

I have not verified nukes were dropped on japan, I have seen lots off sources that say they were but I have not seen a mushroom cloud nor wittnessed a city destroyed.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 27, 2013, 12:42:11 PM
Am I the only one who thinks that epidemic is lying about being an atheist? I wouldn't be surprised if he turned around and said something like... "You know what, christianity makes sense! I'm a born-again christian!"

Nope, not gonna happen.  we are quibbling over the definition of a word.  I believe you are an atheist I am an agnostic atheist and I believe that most claimed atheists are agnostic atheists or weak atheists.  Like my friend i do find the strongest sense of the word atheist is a very rare person.  Probably self absorbed and cock sure of himself.  but even dawkins (spelling) admitts to be only 99.99999% atheist.  that leaves a small amount of room for the existence of god.  I myself am 99.99999% sure the bible is wrong, and 99.9% sure there are no gods or dieties or magic, or unicorns...  I am not 100% sure because I am not so arrogant as to say I know for a fact that I know enough to answer with authority on the absolute absence of god.


You will have to take me at my word but I am not misrepresenting myself.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 27, 2013, 12:53:15 PM
<snip>

The only way that makes any sense is if we ignore the fact that everyone has a different definition of the term "god". Mine, for example, cannot exist. Ergo, I am a gnostic atheist[1], and it doesn't require a big ego for me to be one.

You will have to take me at my word but I am not misrepresenting myself.

I don't have to take you at your word. In fact, I already don't.
 1. Not a typo.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jaimehlers on August 27, 2013, 01:11:08 PM
well I guess we are just on different pages here.
The problem is that you're too focused on arguing with us, and not focused enough on the flaws in your own position.

Quote from: epidemic
I say I have been teleported by an alien,   you ask me to prove it, I say I can not.
Which means, barring actual evidence to support your claim, there's no reason to accept it.

Quote from: epidemic
You say teleportation is not possible.
No, I don't.  I say that we don't know if teleportation is possible.

Quote from: epidemic
I say prove I have not been teleportation is not possible.
This sentence is an offense against the English language.  I suggest you rephrase.

Quote from: epidemic
In this imaginary scenario assume I actually was teleported.  just because you can not prove a negative does not make it false.
But it doesn't make it true either, which is the point.  That's why the person advancing a claim has to support it.

Quote from: epidemic
Even though your convinced I have never been teleported you are wrong.  is your postion a belief that is wrong or is it an errant fact?
Still a flawed position, epidemic.  As I said earlier, you're too busy arguing and not busy enough thinking.  You aren't correctly predicting what my position would actually be, and thus you're presenting a false dichotomy of possible positions.  There are other options besides the two you presented here.

Quote from: epidemic
I think most everything I have an opinion or think I know is probably more of a belief than hard core fact I have been told that lions are from africa and alligators live in some north carolina swamps.  I believe these things to be true I have lots of things that are hear say but I have not personally verified either.  there is no reason for someone to lie about these things so I have a very firm belief but....
Yes, all of those are beliefs, after a fashion.  But the point is that they're about you believing in something (that exists or that happened, or even where it came from).  If you didn't believe that lions were from Africa, then you would have to have someplace in mind where you thought they came from - which is a belief.  But the lack of belief in something is not itself a belief.

And that's what I'm trying to get at.  Atheists do indeed believe in things.  As Hatter said, he believes that when he sets his hat down and goes to sleep, it will stay where it is unless something (like another person, or an animal, or wind from his overhead fan that he left on) moves it.  So atheists have things they believe in instead of gods - but that does not mean that atheism itself is one of those beliefs.

Do you see what I'm trying to get at now?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: ParkingPlaces on August 27, 2013, 02:18:31 PM
Nope, not gonna happen.  we are quibbling over the definition of a word.  I believe you are an atheist I am an agnostic atheist and I believe that most claimed atheists are agnostic atheists or weak atheists.  Like my friend i do find the strongest sense of the word atheist is a very rare person.  Probably self absorbed and cock sure of himself.  but even dawkins (spelling) admitts to be only 99.99999% atheist.  that leaves a small amount of room for the existence of god.  I myself am 99.99999% sure the bible is wrong, and 99.9% sure there are no gods or dieties or magic, or unicorns...  I am not 100% sure because I am not so arrogant as to say I know for a fact that I know enough to answer with authority on the absolute absence of god.

You will have to take me at my word but I am not misrepresenting myself.

I have a question, epidemic.

In a hypothetical world that had no gods in the first place, and where nobody had ever suggested or heard of a god, where the word atheist was not even needed because nobody had ever thought of god things, would their non-stance on their non-god situation still be a belief?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Graybeard on August 27, 2013, 04:19:55 PM
I say I have been teleported by an alien, you ask me to prove it, I say I can not.

http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/162890-human-teleportation-would-take-so-long-itd-be-more-like-a-death-ray

The evidence is against you and you have no explanation. I reckon that's enough proof.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Nam on August 27, 2013, 04:22:47 PM
Am I the only one who thinks that epidemic is lying about being an atheist? I wouldn't be surprised if he turned around and said something like... "You know what, christianity makes sense! I'm a born-again christian!"

He's an atheist? Really? I never got that.

-Nam
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 29, 2013, 03:45:25 PM
He's an atheist? Really? I never got that.

-Nam

It's what he claims. I believe otherwise, though.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Nam on August 29, 2013, 03:48:16 PM
He's an atheist? Really? I never got that.

-Nam

It's what he claims. I believe otherwise, though.

If he's an atheist than we all must be Christians. :P

-Nam
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 29, 2013, 03:51:25 PM
He's an atheist? Really? I never got that.

-Nam

It's what he claims. I believe otherwise, though.


[correction]Well that just goes to prove your faith is misplaced:)
Sorry for my poor choice of words.       
----------- well that just proves to me that your beliefs are wrong on occasion---------
----------- as such I will have to be careful when evaluating what you say--------------

[/correction]



Like I said before I am an agnostic atheist.   I still have room in my mind that I may be incorrect in my analysis of the universe.  But at this point religious texts that tell us about god appear to be false.   If they are false and they are our only link to what is in gods mind and our only link to his existence then I think I can logically conclude there is no god.

However that all hinges on my belief that I am right in analysis.   A shit load of people believe in god and they claim to have spoken with him through history.  Who am I to say that I know they did not.   I am strongly inclined to think that it was a piece of bad gruel, a magic mushroom trip gone wrong and or other.  But my .00000001% belief that god might exist still remains.

If that makes me a theist then so be it.   But I don't think it does.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 29, 2013, 03:55:50 PM
Well that just goes to prove your faith is misplaced:)
<snip>

Even confuses belief with faith, like (most) theists do. I do believe[1] the evidence is piling up.
[sarcasm]I'll be sure to replace "believe" with "think" from now on, just for you.[/sarcasm]
 1. Get it?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 29, 2013, 04:34:44 PM
well I guess we are just on different pages here.
The problem is that you're too focused on arguing with us, and not focused enough on the flaws in your own position.

Quote from: epidemic
I say I have been teleported by an alien,   you ask me to prove it, I say I can not.
Which means, barring actual evidence to support your claim, there's no reason to accept it.

Quote from: epidemic
You say teleportation is not possible.
No, I don't.  I say that we don't know if teleportation is possible.

Quote from: epidemic
I say prove I have not been teleportated
This sentence is an offense against the English language.  I suggest you rephrase.

Sorry corrected

Quote from: epidemic
In this imaginary scenario assume I actually was teleported.  just because you can not prove a negative does not make it false.

But it doesn't make it true either, which is the point.  That's why the person advancing a claim has to support it.


Actually no it doesn't need to be supported to be true.   It needs to be supported for you to believe it.  Again I said assume the reality,  I actually had been teleported under the conditions I explained.   Now I come to a non believer and tell them the incredible story of being teleported and I can not prove it.  I still have been teleported I just lack proof.   it is still truth in the scenario I laid out.  It is simply unverifiable. 

Just as the story of me catching a bullet I fired from my gun at a target 50 feet away.  it is slightly less unbelievable but I still don't expect you to  believe me.  I can not prove it so you would have to take me at my word and since you don't know me from adam, I guess it is up to you whether you believe it.   But it is never the less absolutely true. 

If you think it is false does that make it in actuallity false?  Since you can not verify it you may believe it to be false.  But it is only a belief.

As I think about this I kinda look at almost everything I know but have not personally tested are beliefs.  I believe to the maximum decimal place buttttt.

Quote
Yes, all of those are beliefs, after a fashion.  But the point is that they're about you believing in something (that exists or that happened, or even where it came from).  If you didn't believe that lions were from Africa, then you would have to have someplace in mind where you thought they came from - which is a belief.  But the lack of belief in something is not itself a belief.

And that's what I'm trying to get at.  Atheists do indeed believe in things.  As Hatter said, he believes that when he sets his hat down and goes to sleep, it will stay where it is unless something (like another person, or an animal, or wind from his overhead fan that he left on) moves it.  So atheists have things they believe in instead of gods - but that does not mean that atheism itself is one of those beliefs.

Do you see what I'm trying to get at now?

There is tons of proof that god exists I just don't lend it any credibility because those sources are old and defy logic and are from too few sources.  People through out history have claimed it.   I don't know if they lied or are dillusional for certain. 

Let me ask this, Isn't the claim of first hand knowledge a form of proof?  Usually we verify it with other first hand accounts when evaluating history and if we are lucky we may find corroberating physical evidence. 

Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jaimehlers on August 29, 2013, 05:32:00 PM
Actually no it doesn't need to be supported to be true.   It needs to be supported for you to believe it.  Again I said assume the reality,  I actually had been teleported under the conditions I explained.   Now I come to a non believer and tell them the incredible story of being teleported and I can not prove it.  I still have been teleported I just lack proof.   it is still truth in the scenario I laid out.  It is simply unverifiable.
Why are you wasting everyone's time arguing about semantics?

If something is true, there will be supporting evidence for it.  It doesn't matter whether it's teleportation, catching a bullet you fired out of a gun, or being able to leap tall buildings in a single bound.  So if you can't provide that supporting evidence, then there is no reason to go any further with your story until you can.  And that's really all there is to this.

You can pull out all the hypothetical scenarios you like, claim that they're arbitrarily true for the sake of argument, and then make the case that other people 'believe' they're false because you can't provide evidence.  So what?  There's a very simple fact that you're missing here - the burden of proof rests with the person making the claim.  Meaning, if you can't prove it, there's no reason to consider it to be true.  Indeed, if we take away your arbitrary statement that it was true despite your utter lack of proof, then the whole thing falls apart.

Quote from: epidemic
Just as the story of me catching a bullet I fired from my gun at a target 50 feet away.  it is slightly less unbelievable but I still don't expect you to  believe me.  I can not prove it so you would have to take me at my word and since you don't know me from adam, I guess it is up to you whether you believe it.   But it is never the less absolutely true.
No, it is not absolutely true.  You are arbitrarily declaring that it is absolutely true for the sake of argument.  And that is the fatal flaw in your argument.

Quote from: epidemic
If you think it is false does that make it in actuallity false?  Since you can not verify it you may believe it to be false.  But it is only a belief.
No, it is not a belief.  Because in actual fact - pay attention, this is important - the proper skeptical attitude is, "okay, prove it.  What, you don't have proof?  Then come back when you do, and stop wasting my time until then."  Instead, you're playing word games to try to support your argument, which are getting pretty tiresome.

Quote from: epidemic
As I think about this I kinda look at almost everything I know but have not personally tested are beliefs.  I believe to the maximum decimal place buttttt.
In case you haven't realized it, there is nothing at all in this universe that can be proved with absolute certainty.  Doesn't matter whether you've tested it or not, and it doesn't matter whether someone else has for that matter - you cannot be absolutely perfectly certain that it isn't wrong.  But it's extremely ridiculous to then say, "well, I can't be absolutely sure, even though it's almost completely sure, so hey, it's a belief that I have faith in".

Quote from: epidemic
There is tons of proof that god exists I just don't lend it any credibility because those sources are old and defy logic and are from too few sources.  People through out history have claimed it.   I don't know if they lied or are dillusional for certain. 

Let me ask this, Isn't the claim of first hand knowledge a form of proof?  Usually we verify it with other first hand accounts when evaluating history and if we are lucky we may find corroberating physical evidence.
All you had to say is, "no, I don't really get what you're saying," because it's clear from your post that you don't.  Acting as if you did, and then writing a post like this, is not conducive to a reasonable discussion.

There is not tons of proof that gods exist.  Instead, there's tons of evidence that people believe gods exist.  That's because the evidence is invariably anecdotal, and more to the point, most of it is anecdotal hearsay.  It's always a story that got passed down about a god or gods.  There are virtually no firsthand records of people who had experiences of the 'divine'.  And what few there are can't be verified because they're subjective.  Paul ran into an angel on the road when he was alone; Constantine saw a vision in the sky on the eve of a big battle (which, apparently, nobody else saw).  And so on and so forth.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Nam on August 29, 2013, 07:21:04 PM
jaimehlers,

Don't forget the #1 (which is mentioned repetitively throughout the Bible): "God/an Angel/Jesus (etc.,) came to me in my dream."

-Nam
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 29, 2013, 07:22:24 PM
Quote
In case you haven't realized it, there is nothing at all in this universe that can be proved with absolute certainty.  Doesn't matter whether you've tested it or not, and it doesn't matter whether someone else has for that matter - you cannot be absolutely perfectly certain that it isn't wrong.  But it's extremely ridiculous to then say, "well, I can't be absolutely sure, even though it's almost completely sure, so hey, it's a belief that I have faith in".

That is what I have been driving at .  But I can see where you would say it is absolute fact.  As factual as you can imagine.




Simple fact is truth can not always be proven.

Just as I can not prove the bullet and it is true

Proof is not an absolute requirement of truth.  It is a valid tool in achieving belief.


Done arguing here!
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jaimehlers on August 29, 2013, 10:21:12 PM
Simple fact is truth can not always be proven.
Yes, it's true that the truth can't always be proven.  But that doesn't make what we currently know a belief based on faith.

Quote from: epidemic
Just as I can not prove the bullet and it is true
Let me make sure of something.  Is this another hypothetical scenario like your "teleported by aliens" thing, or is this something you actually say happened?  Cause if you say it really happened, then I think evidence would be in order.  Otherwise, it's just an unsubstantiated claim.

Quote from: epidemic
Proof is not an absolute requirement of truth.  It is a valid tool in achieving belief.
Ironically enough, if you had paid better attention, you might have noticed that I never said atheists didn't have beliefs.  They just aren't beliefs based on faith - that is, no evidence.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 30, 2013, 09:05:47 AM
The bullet is absolutely true.  My backstop was an old 36 inch tree that we had cut and stacked.  around the core of the tree was approximately 10 inches of punky wood I would say the bullet probably ended up traveling through about 10 inches of punky wood hit the core and then traveled back about 10 inches through punky wood lofted high in the air toward me I saw it and managed to catch the hard little piece of deformed lead.  It is an unsubstantiated claim for certain but it is absolutely true.  The odds of reproducing it are exceedingly small.  it was a fluke.  You can either believe it or not.  I admitt the evidence is only my word a faceless person on the internet.  the obligation is on me to prove it but I only have my word.  That does not of course change the nature of it being fact or not.

Lack of evidence does not equal false.  As such I have to concede that god is possible.  people claimed it, they have written it down and I know about these claims.  I can not prove them false and they can not prove them true.  Which leaves me to determine whether I believe them or not.   Isn't that a belief? 
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jaimehlers on August 30, 2013, 09:33:21 AM
I could see that being a highly unlikely fluke; it's certainly possible.  It doesn't require superpowers or a violation of physical laws to accomplish, anyway.

Note, however, that you did have evidence of this having happened.  You had the bullet itself, and you also had the entry and exit holes on the wood.  For example, you could have taken pictures of them to show other people.  You could also have preserved them as the physical evidence to help substantiate your claim.  Since you didn't, there's no way to be sure - thus I neither believe[1] nor disbelieve[2] your claim.

Thus, my earlier statement about the proper skeptical attitude.
 1. since you do not have any evidence you can produce
 2. since you don't have a reputation for making stuff up, and it is at least possible
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Graybeard on August 30, 2013, 09:46:17 AM
The bullet is absolutely true.  ...I would say the bullet probably ended up traveling through about 10 inches of punky wood hit the core and then traveled back about 10 inches through punky wood lofted high in the air toward me I saw it and managed to catch the hard little piece of deformed lead.

I don't see why it should not be true. However, the thing is that you have given an explanation that seems in line with what we know about ballistics, bullets hitting hard objects and the human ability to catch things.

I think you have shown that what appear to be "miracles" etc., all have logical causes, and only those who fail to think chant out the explanation, "My god did it." and in doing so, expose their own ignorance.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 30, 2013, 01:20:10 PM
from this thread I have come to believe that there are indeed practical atheists.  They may not be absolute atheists because as stated almost nothing can be proven or disproven absolutely. 

Yes OJ simpson could have been cloned and his clone comitted the murder.  but it is pretty unlikely.

I will also seed that from a practical standpoint atheists don't believe in god.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: One Above All on August 30, 2013, 01:23:18 PM
They may not be absolute atheists because as stated almost nothing can be proven or disproven absolutely. 

How many times do I have to state that I, and others like me, exist? I actively deny the existence of any and all deities, by my definition of the term.

I will also seed that from a practical standpoint atheists don't believe in god.

I think you meant "(con)cede".
Anyway, that's the definition of "atheist". An atheist lacks belief in all deities.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: jaimehlers on August 30, 2013, 01:35:02 PM
from this thread I have come to believe that there are indeed practical atheists.  They may not be absolute atheists because as stated almost nothing can be proven or disproven absolutely.
Not exactly.  As OAA said, there are people who use logic to rule out the existence of gods.  He could tell you more about that than I could, but it works something like this:

1.  By definition, there is no outside to the universe, because it comprises all of existence.
2.  Therefore, the existence of an 'outside' to the universe can logically be ruled out.  It would require something to be outside of existence, yet still existing, a major logical contradiction.

That doesn't mean that there can't be an outside to what we currently understand is the universe.  That just means that the universe is bigger than we thought it was.

So, too, it goes with gods.  There could indeed be powerful, god-like beings, but they would not be actual gods, because by his definition, gods cannot exist.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: ParkingPlaces on August 30, 2013, 03:17:13 PM
They may not be absolute atheists because as stated almost nothing can be proven or disproven absolutely. 

There are no gods. Every god suggested, proposed, claimed, suspected and or/hoped for has been the product of human imagination. I don't have to disprove them. None of them are real. Until someone can show me, and I mean show me as in right in front of my fucking face, a god, I will continue to say that there are none, without any shadow of a doubt.

Yes, I may be wrong. But I don't think so for even a second, so hence none of my energy is spent on doubt.

You can play all the games you want with semantics, epidemic, but until believers have something to show for a god besides their words, they have nothing to show me.

If only one god, throughout all of history, had been proposed and remained invisible, if only one god had been proposed and nobody had ever modified said deity for selfish purposes, then I might take a little more time to listen. If there was only that one story, world-wide, and it had no variation, the concept might get a little of my attention. Even without proof.

But that is not the case. In any sense of the word. Hence it is all bull, and I don't have to turn on the part of my brain that I use to believe things to accept or reject it. I reject it outright.

I can prove that there are absolute idiots, which account for all god stories. I don't have to play any games. There are no gods. No proof required. Because not one shred of evidence that there is a god or are multiple gods has ever been put forth. That is why I can tell people who insist otherwise to shove off.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on August 30, 2013, 03:22:04 PM
They may not be absolute atheists because as stated almost nothing can be proven or disproven absolutely. 

How many times do I have to state that I, and others like me, exist? I actively deny the existence of any and all deities, by my definition of the term.

I will also seed that from a practical standpoint atheists don't believe in god.

I think you meant "(con)cede".
Anyway, that's the definition of "atheist". An atheist lacks belief in all deities.

I meant cede not seed.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Nam on August 30, 2013, 06:03:24 PM
I think the first step is getting those who believe in a "god", to answer, what is "god"? Each individual theist who believes in a "god" has their own definition. Perhaps a group(s) of theists hold the same definition but if you get right down to it I bet each individual in said group(s) is different in some way to the others in their group.

But then is every theist who believe in a god sure if their god exists?

I doubt it.

So one could conclude "there are no theists[1] in foxholes".

-Nam
 1. who believe in a god

Oh you are right there.  I think theists in the strictest sense are few and far between when push comes to shove they question the existence of god.  My friend wants to use on atheists strictest definition to mean not a shread of doubt or room for doubt, if that standard applied to theists 99.9999999% of them probably fall into agnostic camp as well.

You keep talking about your "friend", I don't care about your friends thought, I doubt many do here. We care about your thoughts: your reference to your friend makes, not just me I am sure, that when you say "my friend" you're actually speaking about yourself.

You are here. We want to know your thoughts, not some imaginary[2] friend's thoughts.

Until then, for me, you come off as a delusional idiot.

-Nam
 2. in the sense they aren't here
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: DVZ3 on August 31, 2013, 06:40:09 PM
Tell your friend that not only do I believe he doesn't exist, I don't believe in "theists" either.  ;)
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Betelnut on August 31, 2013, 08:01:51 PM
Another 100% atheist here.  I don't have any doubt that this universe is a natural phenomena and no "super"natural entity exists.  A non-corporeal entity is an oxymoron of epic proportions.

So, yes, "real" atheists exist.

But, for the record, being 99.99999% sure is pretty much the same as being 100% sure.

Why quibble?
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on September 05, 2013, 07:33:11 AM
Another 100% atheist here.  I don't have any doubt that this universe is a natural phenomena and no "super"natural entity exists.  A non-corporeal entity is an oxymoron of epic proportions.

So, yes, "real" atheists exist.

But, for the record, being 99.99999% sure is pretty much the same as being 100% sure.

Why quibble?

You believe infinitely less than a 100% atheist if you are only 99.999999999999999% sure :) 

But seriously I now believe that there are atheists.  The metric of 99.9999999999999% sure is as sure as anything possible.  Virtually no honest person can be 100% sure of anything so to use that as an excuse to claim someone is not an atheist is an unreasonable metric. 

As for my friend he does indeed exist.  I use him as an example because he says such interesing things and I am constantly doing battle with him on facebook.


nam,  I do put my thoughts beliefs on this forum, in most of my posts even where I am using my third party battles.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: LoriPinkAngel on September 05, 2013, 11:02:05 AM
I have lots of friends in my head.  Most have become about 90% non-believers.  One is considering Pastafarianism and when we get an EBT card will be looking for a pink pasta strainer.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Nam on September 05, 2013, 01:12:53 PM
"Atheism is about belief."

Belief in what?

-Nam

Actually it is not belief in nothing.  It is belief that the people who contend god is real are wrong.  Once presented with the argument that god is real, and you can not disprove it, then it is a belief that these people and their sources are wrong.

Wrong.

If they make a claim, cannot back up that claim, then their claim is nonsensical. Whether wrong or right is irrelevant.

Like if I make the claim that Biblegod  doesn't exist without evidence to support my position then I have no standing.

It's not about who's right or who's wrong. It's about the evidence. And 10 out of 10 times: they don't have any evidence.

Now if you see that as us saying "you're wrong", then that's your problem not ours.

We ask for reputable evidence, they provide none.

The only "evidence" they seem to have are their faith, their holy book(s), or their belief that they are always right because of those things.

That's not evidence but of their uselessness and delusional state-of-mind in concern to those things.

-Nam
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: epidemic on September 17, 2013, 01:12:09 PM
"Atheism is about belief."

Belief in what?

-Nam

Actually it is not belief in nothing.  It is belief that the people who contend god is real are wrong.  Once presented with the argument that god is real, and you can not disprove it, then it is a belief that these people and their sources are wrong.

Wrong.

If they make a claim, cannot back up that claim, then their claim is nonsensical. Whether wrong or right is irrelevant.

Like if I make the claim that Biblegod  doesn't exist without evidence to support my position then I have no standing.

It's not about who's right or who's wrong. It's about the evidence. And 10 out of 10 times: they don't have any evidence.

Now if you see that as us saying "you're wrong", then that's your problem not ours.

We ask for reputable evidence, they provide none.

The only "evidence" they seem to have are their faith, their holy book(s), or their belief that they are always right because of those things.

That's not evidence but of their uselessness and delusional state-of-mind in concern to those things.

-Nam

This guy has conned my sister out of 120,000 dollars, he borrowed my truck at a cost of 270 dollars to me before my sister let on that she figured out the guy was a leech, For a year he claimed most every day to be coming by to make payments, I did not believe he was coming, all evidence and logic dictated that the asshole would not give me 1 red cent,  12 months and hundreds of meetings and promised phone calls all said he was not coming. 

Then one day he said he was coming,  and he didn't show:)

The very next week after 5 or 10 more proposed visits he was going to meet to me to pay me he showed up with my 270.  My sister has been somewhat more lucky she has started receiving payments.

Sometimes even when all the evidence leads you down one path you can be wrong.  I thought I knew he would not pay one red cent but in the end apparently I believed wrong and my faith in my ability to inerpret facts was shaken:)


PS I still think he is going to stiff us in the end but I guess we will see.  Right now I am glad for myself and my sister that I was wrong.  I was right in the hundreds of other interactions in believing he would not show up  So even with 100 fails in 100 attempts there is always attempt 101.

I don't know if the bible people saw jesus walk on water, raise the dead, or really saw talking flaming bushes.  Based upon past experience and logic I conclude probably not.  But I can't say for absolute sure that these are not historical facts.
Title: Re: My friend does not believe in Atheists. He is an Aatheist!
Post by: Nam on September 17, 2013, 04:55:08 PM
epi,

You're either mind-numbingly stupid or mind-numbingly ignorant of anything that goes against what you say is true or not true based on your minuscule opinion of things that you see as factual.

Which is it? Inquiring minds would like to know.

-Nam