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Author Topic:   Does Athiesm = no beliefs?
Tangle
Member
Posts: 4408
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 271 of 348 (774824)
12-23-2015 12:01 PM
Reply to: Message 268 by New Cat's Eye
12-22-2015 5:55 PM


CatSci writes:

I do not hold the belief that god exist, but I don't mean to say that he doesn't

You seem to have gone to extraordinary lengths simply to repeat what has been said many times. I totally understand what you're saying - it's just wrong.

It's simply not possible for someone to say "I do not hold the belief that god exist, but I don't mean to say that he doesn't" and not be an atheist.

The qualifying statement of not insisting that god doesn't exist is merely an adjunct to the primary condition of a stated disbelief in the existence of god. Hence atheism.

Please, no more.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien.

Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 268 by New Cat's Eye, posted 12-22-2015 5:55 PM New Cat's Eye has not yet responded

  
Blue Jay
Member (Idle past 49 days)
Posts: 2843
From: You couldn't pronounce it with your mouthparts
Joined: 02-04-2008


Message 272 of 348 (774864)
12-23-2015 7:09 PM
Reply to: Message 270 by kbertsche
12-23-2015 11:35 AM


Hi, kbertsche.

What you're saying sounds a lot like what I was trying to say, so I suppose we are in total agreement about how scientists operate.

Where we may still differ is in how this assessment of scientists applies to atheists, so I'd like to solicit your thoughts on that matter.

In my opinion, the same argument about scientists applies to atheists. Atheists on this forum always present ourselves in the 'idealized' fashion: that is, we say we lack belief in deity, and do not actually assert its non-existence.

In practice though, we are highly biased against theistic propositions, which is effectively the same thing as 'believing' that god does not exist.

I would argue that the bias is justified on pragmatic grounds (i.e. for the same resource-allocation arguments you were making about science); but I would also argue that the bias is in tension with our claim that we do nor disbelieve, bu tsimply lack beliefs.

I believe the tension can be entirely attributed to our failures as imperfect humans to live up to our idealized aspirations. I feel like this gives us a comfortable 'middle ground' that may solve the discrepancy in the two sides' opinions on the whole 'what is an atheist' debate?

Edited by Blue Jay, : No reason given.


-Blue Jay, Ph.D.*

*Yeah, it's real

Darwin loves you.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 270 by kbertsche, posted 12-23-2015 11:35 AM kbertsche has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 273 by ThinAirDesigns, posted 12-23-2015 9:27 PM Blue Jay has not yet responded

  
ThinAirDesigns
Member
Posts: 563
Joined: 02-12-2015
Member Rating: 3.9


Message 273 of 348 (774866)
12-23-2015 9:27 PM
Reply to: Message 272 by Blue Jay
12-23-2015 7:09 PM


quote:
Atheists on this forum always present ourselves in the 'idealized' fashion: that is, we say we lack belief in deity, and do not actually assert its non-existence.

In practice though, we are highly biased against theistic propositions, which is effectively the same thing as 'believing' that god does not exist.


I can only speak for myself here, but I can only Ident as an atheist or an agnostic when you tell me which god or god concept you are asking about and I think that can lead to what would be a false conclusion (re: me) above.

I actively believe that the Christian god does not exist - in the exact same way I actively believe that Santa doesn't exist. Just as with Santa, I can study the history of this god and determine origins. I sincerely do *not* actively believe that say a "deist" god doesn't exist - one that doesn't play a personal, day to day role in our lives. This God might exist ... how could I know?

This is why I may identify as an atheist or an agnostic depending on the concept described.

JB


This message is a reply to:
 Message 272 by Blue Jay, posted 12-23-2015 7:09 PM Blue Jay has not yet responded

  
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 15477
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 4.0


Message 274 of 348 (774868)
12-23-2015 10:24 PM
Reply to: Message 245 by Tangle
12-20-2015 2:29 PM


Yup, but we don't know whether they believe in a god or not either.

If they admit that they don't know whether there's a god or not, then presumably they don't believe there is one and they don't believe there isn't.

Just as someone who admits he doesn't know how the coin came down doesn't believe that it was heads and doesn't believe that it was tails.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 245 by Tangle, posted 12-20-2015 2:29 PM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 275 by Tangle, posted 12-24-2015 2:54 AM Dr Adequate has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 4408
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 275 of 348 (774869)
12-24-2015 2:54 AM
Reply to: Message 274 by Dr Adequate
12-23-2015 10:24 PM


Dr A writes:

If they admit that they don't know whether there's a god or not, then presumably they don't believe there is one and they don't believe there isn't.

No. I don't believe there is a god. I don't know whether there is or not but I see no evidence for one. So I've concluded there isn't one pending contradictory information.

I can't know, but I can believe or not believe.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien.

Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 274 by Dr Adequate, posted 12-23-2015 10:24 PM Dr Adequate has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 276 by NoNukes, posted 12-24-2015 12:33 PM Tangle has responded
 Message 282 by Dr Adequate, posted 12-24-2015 11:34 PM Tangle has responded
 Message 287 by Phat, posted 06-17-2016 3:59 PM Tangle has responded

  
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9330
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.6


Message 276 of 348 (774891)
12-24-2015 12:33 PM
Reply to: Message 275 by Tangle
12-24-2015 2:54 AM


So I've concluded there isn't one pending contradictory information

Why is it important, necessary, or even desired to reach a conclusion? What do you call people who don't reach a conclusion? How is reaching a conclusion based on incomplete information distinguishable from a belief?

Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King

If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams


This message is a reply to:
 Message 275 by Tangle, posted 12-24-2015 2:54 AM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 277 by Tangle, posted 12-24-2015 1:36 PM NoNukes has acknowledged this reply

    
Tangle
Member
Posts: 4408
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 277 of 348 (774900)
12-24-2015 1:36 PM
Reply to: Message 276 by NoNukes
12-24-2015 12:33 PM


NN writes:

Why is it important, necessary, or even desired to reach a conclusion?

I didn't say it was, I said that's what I'd done.

What do you call people who don't reach a conclusion?

Atheists - because they don't believe in god. Belief is a positive, emotional state, those that have it tell us all about it.

How is reaching a conclusion based on incomplete information distinguishable from a belief?

It's what we all have to do all the time isn't it? Including science - a scientist looks at the evidence he has and attempts to form a conclusion. When we talk about gods, we talk about beliefs, not conclusions - If we had complete information belief wouldn't be necessary and scientific conclusion wouldn't be called tentative.

I know for certain that I don't believe in god - that's factual, as factual as Faith knowing that she does believe in her god. But I also make the leap to say that I also believe that God doesn't exist. That's a logical conclusion based on the evidence I have - call it a belief if you like, but don't confuse it with a religious belief.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien.

Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 276 by NoNukes, posted 12-24-2015 12:33 PM NoNukes has acknowledged this reply

Replies to this message:
 Message 278 by Tanypteryx, posted 12-24-2015 2:45 PM Tangle has responded

  
Tanypteryx
Member
Posts: 1325
From: Oregon, USA
Joined: 08-27-2006
Member Rating: 7.0


Message 278 of 348 (774905)
12-24-2015 2:45 PM
Reply to: Message 277 by Tangle
12-24-2015 1:36 PM


I know I shouldn't ask this, but I am waiting for the wife to finish her last minute shopping.

Why are you guys all going around and around about what you call yourselves and each other based on the fine nuances of "I believe or I don't believe or I believe not?"

What difference does it make in any of your lives?

I call myself tall and good looking and I don't care what any of you say.


What if Eleanor Roosevelt had wings? -- Monty Python

One important characteristic of a theory is that is has survived repeated attempts to falsify it. Contrary to your understanding, all available evidence confirms it. --Subbie

If evolution is shown to be false, it will be at the hands of things that are true, not made up. --percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 277 by Tangle, posted 12-24-2015 1:36 PM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 279 by kjsimons, posted 12-24-2015 3:18 PM Tanypteryx has acknowledged this reply
 Message 280 by Tangle, posted 12-24-2015 4:11 PM Tanypteryx has acknowledged this reply
 Message 281 by NoNukes, posted 12-24-2015 9:33 PM Tanypteryx has acknowledged this reply

    
kjsimons
Member
Posts: 632
From: Orlando,FL
Joined: 06-17-2003


(1)
Message 279 of 348 (774907)
12-24-2015 3:18 PM
Reply to: Message 278 by Tanypteryx
12-24-2015 2:45 PM


I think this boils down to "Someone is (perceived to be) wrong on the internet".

Edited by kjsimons, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 278 by Tanypteryx, posted 12-24-2015 2:45 PM Tanypteryx has acknowledged this reply

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 4408
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.8


(1)
Message 280 of 348 (774910)
12-24-2015 4:11 PM
Reply to: Message 278 by Tanypteryx
12-24-2015 2:45 PM


Tany writes:

Why are you guys all going around and around about what you call yourselves and each other based on the fine nuances of "I believe or I don't believe or I believe not?"

It's what we do around here, you know, argue the arse off things of no consequence - haven't you noticed?

If I try to do it with my wife but she tells me to shut the fuck up and empty the dishwasher.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien.

Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 278 by Tanypteryx, posted 12-24-2015 2:45 PM Tanypteryx has acknowledged this reply

  
NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9330
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.6


(1)
Message 281 of 348 (774921)
12-24-2015 9:33 PM
Reply to: Message 278 by Tanypteryx
12-24-2015 2:45 PM


What difference does it make in any of your lives?

Surely making a hill of beans difference not the accepted internet standard for taking a position and refusing to acknowledge any point made by the other fellow. Somebody is wrong on the internet and they won't admit it. Isn't that enough?


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King

If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams


This message is a reply to:
 Message 278 by Tanypteryx, posted 12-24-2015 2:45 PM Tanypteryx has acknowledged this reply

    
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 15477
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 4.0


Message 282 of 348 (774927)
12-24-2015 11:34 PM
Reply to: Message 275 by Tangle
12-24-2015 2:54 AM


I don't know whether there is or not but I see no evidence for one.

That's as near to knowing something as it's possible to get. Unless you want "know" to mean "have knowledge so absolute that it could never be controverted by any conceivable data", then seeing no evidence of a thing that's meant to be everywhere is pretty good grounds for saying you know it doesn't exist. That does make you an atheist. But what about someone who thought there was evidence for and evidence against? --- someone who felt the argument from design was balanced by the argument from evil? What then?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 275 by Tangle, posted 12-24-2015 2:54 AM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 283 by Tangle, posted 12-25-2015 4:03 AM Dr Adequate has not yet responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 4408
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 283 of 348 (774931)
12-25-2015 4:03 AM
Reply to: Message 282 by Dr Adequate
12-24-2015 11:34 PM


Dr A writes:

But what about someone who thought there was evidence for and evidence against? --- someone who felt the argument from design was balanced by the argument from evil? What then?

Then they don't know whether god exists or not.

But from that we don't know whether they believe in god or not. People believe in God for all sorts of reasons - not just because they think there's evidence. In fact, most people probably never even consider evidence at all - except in a 'isn't nature miraculous' way.

But belief is something you either have or you don't. Those that have a belief in god know they have a belief in god, if you don't know whether you believe in god or not, you don't believe in god. Gnosticism is about knowledge/evidence of god not belief in god.


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien.

Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 282 by Dr Adequate, posted 12-24-2015 11:34 PM Dr Adequate has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 284 by Hawkins, posted 06-17-2016 1:52 PM Tangle has not yet responded

  
Hawkins
Member
Posts: 150
From: Hong Kong
Joined: 08-25-2005


Message 284 of 348 (786153)
06-17-2016 1:52 PM
Reply to: Message 283 by Tangle
12-25-2015 4:03 AM


The existence of religions are closely tied up to an unknown lying in front us. It closely concerns our lives but remains unknown to us. It is the question that, "whether life will continue after death".

There are 2 main camps of believes.

1) Life continues, there might be something series would happen
2) Life discontinues

Those with belief 2) don't have the necessity to continue to think about "what could possibly happen". Because "Life discontinues" leaves no room for the possibility of "what could possibly happen".

All religions (including atheism) branch out from these 2 camps. Ironically, there is no evidence showing that life discontinues. Of course, if life discontinues then no evidence will be available. However they choose (subconsciously) to neglect the possibility that life continues but not yet evidenced to humans.

As for camp 1), if life continues then what would happen? The two possibilities now are open to them. It is possible that nothing serious would happen, it is also possible that something serious would happen. They are possibilities in the perspective that it's unknown to us. Either of the two is thus a faith. 

When it is said that "there's bomb nearby", we are facing the same 2 possibilities. It's possible that it's true, it's also possible that it's a hoax. If it's not a situation concerning our lives, it makes sense for us to stay in the area to investigate which of the two possibilities is more true. However "a bomb" is a life threatening situation, we should run disregarding which of the two is more true. Unless we have a more reliable source (say, the police) identified it as a hoax.

Camp 1) however, as influenced (subconsciously) by the "life discontinues" faith fallaciously conclude that they should stay until more evidence showing that it's not a hoax.

Atheism is such a religion with a large group of humans sharing a common belief.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 283 by Tangle, posted 12-25-2015 4:03 AM Tangle has not yet responded

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Tanypteryx
Member
Posts: 1325
From: Oregon, USA
Joined: 08-27-2006
Member Rating: 7.0


(3)
Message 285 of 348 (786154)
06-17-2016 2:11 PM
Reply to: Message 284 by Hawkins
06-17-2016 1:52 PM


Camp 1) however, as influenced (subconsciously) by the "life discontinues" faith fallaciously conclude that they should stay until more evidence showing that it's not a hoax.

Atheism is such a religion with a large group of humans sharing a common belief.

In my case, this is totally incorrect. My atheism has nothing to do with life after death.

My atheism is a lack of belief in the existence of any gods.

There is an old saying: "If atheism is a religion, then NOT collecting stamps is a hobby."


What if Eleanor Roosevelt had wings? -- Monty Python

One important characteristic of a theory is that is has survived repeated attempts to falsify it. Contrary to your understanding, all available evidence confirms it. --Subbie

If evolution is shown to be false, it will be at the hands of things that are true, not made up. --percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 284 by Hawkins, posted 06-17-2016 1:52 PM Hawkins has not yet responded

    
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