# Definitions: Atheism and Agnosticsm.

Discussion in 'Religion Archives' started by Cris, Aug 3, 2003.

1. ### P. M. ThorneRegistered Senior Member

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574
Katazia: Was it actually this date that you answered my comments from February?
That is so funny. I have about forgottent he conversation, such as it was.

One last thing, Kat, "sound logic" is just a little bit a matter of opinion. Logic can fail us; therefore it is only a tool, not a complete method. There is much beyond our rational minds. This is why we have intuition, faith, hope and touchy feely stuff.

Cheers!

3. ### KataziaBlack MambaRegistered Senior Member

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743
PMT,

My last post was also made on 2/17 the same as yours. I am not the one who has ressurected this thread. It looks like it is you who has delayed sending a response - now that is funny.

Life is but an opportunity to learn and expereince and there is very little if anything in life worth taking seriously, except perhaps death but then that is hardly life.

Science and logic are currently the best tools we have developed to help us understand the universe, everything else is redundant and that of course includes religious superstitions.

Intuition, faith, and hope etc are simply less precise methods that we often use when we become tired or lazy of being disciplined. The favored choice of the weak minded (the emotional religionsist) since they are apparently unable to exercise disciplined thought.

Kat

5. ### P. M. ThorneRegistered Senior Member

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574
KAT wrote: My last post was also made on 2/17 the same as yours. I am not the one who has ressurected this thread. It looks like it is you who has delayed sending a response - now that is funny.

ACTUALLY, WE ARE BOTH WRONG, IT WAS SILVERBACK. NOW WE CAN LAUGH AT OURSELVES, I GUESS.

KAT: Life is but an opportunity to learn and expereince and there is very little if anything in life worth taking seriously, except perhaps death but then that is hardly life.

THAT IS A SILLY STATEMENT.

KAT: Science and logic are currently the best tools we have developed to help us understand the universe, everything else is redundant and that of course includes religious superstitions.

THOSE ARE GOOD TOOLS; I DOUBT THAT ANYONE WOULD DISAGREE WITH THAT, BUT THE REST OF YOUR STATEMENT SHOWS PREJUDICE.

Intuition, faith, and hope etc are simply less precise methods that we often use when we become tired or lazy of being disciplined. The favored choice of the weak minded (the emotional religionsist) since they are apparently unable to exercise disciplined thought.

I WOULD GUESS THAT YOU ARE NOT QUALIFIED TO STATE WHO IS WEAK MINDED.

pmt

Kat

7. ### skepticRegistered Senior Member

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30
Hello-
After viewing some of the previous posts, it seems that the concensus is that a weak atheist is someone who lacks belief in god(s), whereas a strong atheist is someone who knows that god(s) do not exist. I agree, however i feel that there could be some middle ground here. My philosophy involves more than just a lack of belief: I am fairly certain (based on logic, reason, science [astronomy, evolutionary biology, physics], psychology, and religious history) that there is no god. However, I do not claim to "know" for sure that their is no God. I have no concrete evidence that god does not exist, nor can anybody. That position is illogical. However, it is not illogical to say that the chances that a god exists are extremely small.
So, i'm stronger than a weak atheist, but weaker than a strong atheist (if a strong atheist is defined as someone who claims to have KNOWLEDGE regarding the non-existence of god). I guess you would say i'm a Rational Atheist...at least thats the best term i've heard so far...

Greg

8. ### davewhite04Valued Senior Member

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3,710
Hello Greg!

Would the label agnostic not suit you better?

Dave

9. ### skepticRegistered Senior Member

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i dont think so, Dave. Only because the most popular meaning of agnostic in my experience seem to be one who not only claims that we can not KNOW about the existence or non-existence of God, but also that we should not make any assumptions about his existence. Many agnostics i know claim to have no opinion about a god(s) existence. I feel this is somewhat illogical. I have a very strong opinion regarding his non-existence. I'm just not irrational enough to claim that i have concrete evidence for this assertion.

Greg

10. ### skepticRegistered Senior Member

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30
after reading numerous threads and a few books on this subject, i have come to the conclusion that the terms agnostic, weak atheism, and strong atheism mean slightly different things to different people, and that this is theh source of many arguments.
If it were up to me, i would do away with the terms weak and strong atheism, and use the following set up:
Agnostic: one who claims direct knowledge regarding a god can not be gained AND states that any decision regarding his existence can not be made.
Rational Atheist: one who admits direct knowledge regarding a god can not be gained, BUT "rationalizes" that a god is extremely unlikely to exist based on logic, religious history, psychology and science (astronomy, evolutionary biology, etc)
Dogmatic Atheist: someone who claims that they can KNOW or have concrete evidence that no gods exist.
I feel dogmatic atheism is as illogical as theism.

greg

11. ### P. M. ThorneRegistered Senior Member

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574
We are so cute when we try to analyze things in such a way that we are the most logical of all, don't you think? pmt

12. ### NeildoGoneRegistered Senior Member

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5,306
skeptic, I'd say you're an agnostic. I'm an agnostic that believes in a God, there's just no way to know to prove it or not, and you're an agnostic that feels the same in not being able to prove it but just doesn't believe in a God. If there were a belief chart, it'd be something like this:

Code:
fanatical atheist ---- weak/regular athiest --- non-believing agnostic --- completely unknown agnostic -- believing agnostic -- weak/regular religious believer -- fanatical religious believer
(if that all fits on one line, lol)

Lol, yeah.

BTW, nice to see ya again PMT.

- N

13. ### skepticRegistered Senior Member

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30
Neildo-
by your definition of agnostic, i do fit the bill, yes. However, I think the majority of people view the agnostic as more of an "on the fence" position, which i am not. If we call everyone who admits that we can not prove or disprove the existence of a god an agnostic, then about 80 percent of the world would be agnostic with only fundamentalist theists and dogmatic atheists being non-agnostics. I dont think that most people who call themselves atheists would argue that they can PROVE their position with evidence. (some fanatics do, but not most atheists). Therefore, i think i'm better classified as an atheist.

Greg

14. ### NeildoGoneRegistered Senior Member

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5,306

Even better. Go Agnosticism!

- N

15. ### Quantum QuackLife's a tease...Valued Senior Member

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20,692
This prompted me to think about the "lost my keys" scenario.

Some where in the house is a lost set of door lock keys. You tear the place apart you put everythinng through a filter. The keys can't be found any where.....you approach it systematically, room by room square meter by square meter, and eventually at the end of this extensive and seemingly absolute search for the keys you come to the conclusion that the keys mustn't be in the house. ( and then you check your back pocket......!!!!