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Author Topic:   Does an atheist have to believe in evolution?
SR71
Member (Idle past 4389 days)
Posts: 38
Joined: 05-07-2006


Message 1 of 64 (310075)
05-07-2006 6:36 PM


In another forum, I'm debating several topics. The Christian told me that all atheists have to believe in Evolution... I told him that it wasn't true but I couldn't really explain why. All I could come up with is that Atheism and any form of origin are not related at all, so it doesn't even matter. But I'd like someone to tell me: do atheists have to believe in evolution? Explain your reasoning.

I posted here for a quick response... I don't want a long topic or anything. Thanks.


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jar
Member
Posts: 30997
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 4.2


Message 2 of 64 (310080)
05-07-2006 7:01 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by SR71
05-07-2006 6:36 PM


I would assume that an Atheist could be as stupid as a Theist. I would imagine that even an Atheist could be dumb enough to doubt Evolution. It's a little harder for the Atheist but that simply makes it a bigger challenge. The Theist has a slight advantage cause they could use Goddit but the Atheist could also believe that things just happened without evolution or Goddit.

The bottom line is anybody who is not in someway mentally handicapped or wilfully ignorant must accept evolution based on the overwhelming preponderance of evidence.


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
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Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6649
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.1


Message 3 of 64 (310082)
05-07-2006 7:09 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by SR71
05-07-2006 6:36 PM


quote:
The Christian told me that all atheists have to believe in Evolution...

An atheist doesn't have to believe anything. If someone could somehow show me that the Theory of evolution was completely wrong and could not explain the world around me, then I simply would not know why the world is the way it is. And when asked about how the world came to be as it is, I would answer, "I don't know."

In fact, when evangelicals ask me how the universe began, I usually just reply, "I don't know." Which is the truth.


"Religion is the best business to be in. It's the only one where the customers blame themselves for product failure."
-- Ellis Weiner (quoted on the NAiG message board)
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robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 4 of 64 (310144)
05-07-2006 10:27 PM


I would think there are two choices: either life forms evolved or they were created. I can't think how else they could have come about.

Of course, on this planet, they may have been created by aliens, but that doesn't matter since the aliens had to come from somewhere.

Yes, I would say an atheist must believe in some form of evolution though maybe not in the Theory of Evolution.


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kuresu
Member (Idle past 686 days)
Posts: 2544
From: boulder, colorado
Joined: 03-24-2006


Message 5 of 64 (310150)
05-07-2006 10:51 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by SR71
05-07-2006 6:36 PM


actually, one doesn't believe in evolution. Muck like no one believes in science. A more appropriate word would be "understands" or "accepts" (though not in the same sense as accepting Jesus as the savior or something like that).
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Funkaloyd
Inactive Member


Message 6 of 64 (310169)
05-07-2006 11:54 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by robinrohan
05-07-2006 10:27 PM


Or an atheist could lack belief in any theory of origins. Or s/he could believe that the aliens you mention always existed. What an atheist can believe is limited only by the imagination, and the prerequisite condition that the belief system is free of gods.
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fallacycop
Member (Idle past 3693 days)
Posts: 692
From: Fortaleza-CE Brazil
Joined: 02-18-2006


Message 7 of 64 (310173)
05-08-2006 12:13 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by SR71
05-07-2006 6:36 PM


Eternal world is a logic option
SR71 writes:

do atheists have to believe in evolution?

An atheist might conceivably believe that the world is eternal and that life has always existed the way it exists now. that precludes the need to believe in evolution.


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ohnhai
Member (Idle past 3335 days)
Posts: 649
From: Melbourne, Australia
Joined: 11-17-2004


Message 8 of 64 (310177)
05-08-2006 12:48 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by SR71
05-07-2006 6:36 PM


An Atheist doesn’t HAVE to believe in Evolution. There is no dogma associated with Atheism to say what you must or must not believe. Most Atheists will support the ToE for the same reasons they don’t believe in the existence of God. That reason being those conclusions are the current best fit with the current evidence.

That said there is nothing stopping an atheist arguing against the ToE for whatever reason, though I will admit his reasons would have to be mighty compelling.


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nwr
Member
Posts: 5585
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005


Message 9 of 64 (310183)
05-08-2006 1:35 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by SR71
05-07-2006 6:36 PM


The Christian told me that all atheists have to believe in Evolution...

Astronomer Fred Hoyle was an atheist who had serious objections to the theory of evolution.
The Intelligent Universe
Fred Hoyle: Father of Nucleosynthesis
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Eis_baer
Inactive Member


Message 10 of 64 (310192)
05-08-2006 2:42 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by SR71
05-07-2006 6:36 PM


Some people don't believe in god (though I don't know if they'd call themselves athiests) and also believe we were put here by aliens as opposed to having evolved.
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Modulous
Member (Idle past 277 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 11 of 64 (310217)
05-08-2006 7:20 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by SR71
05-07-2006 6:36 PM


In another forum, I'm debating several topics. The Christian told me that all atheists have to believe in Evolution

Perhaps you should ask the Christian what atheists believed in before Darwin?


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Chiroptera
Member
Posts: 6649
From: Oklahoma
Joined: 09-28-2003
Member Rating: 5.1


Message 12 of 64 (310246)
05-08-2006 9:13 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by SR71
05-07-2006 6:36 PM


To add a question:
Did this Christian explain why he thinks that an atheist needs to "believe in evolution"?


"Religion is the best business to be in. It's the only one where the customers blame themselves for product failure."
-- Ellis Weiner (quoted on the NAiG message board)
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robinrohan
Inactive Member


Message 13 of 64 (310260)
05-08-2006 10:23 AM
Reply to: Message 11 by Modulous
05-08-2006 7:20 AM


Perhaps you should ask the Christian what atheists believed in before Darwin?

What did they believe in? I'm curious.


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iano
Member (Idle past 113 days)
Posts: 6165
From: Co. Wicklow, Ireland.
Joined: 07-27-2005


Message 14 of 64 (310261)
05-08-2006 10:27 AM
Reply to: Message 13 by robinrohan
05-08-2006 10:23 AM


Evolution presumably. The basic concept is as old as the hills
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NosyNed
Member
Posts: 8842
From: Canada
Joined: 04-04-2003


Message 15 of 64 (310266)
05-08-2006 10:44 AM
Reply to: Message 14 by iano
05-08-2006 10:27 AM


Before Darwin
If you go back not too far before Darwin they may have believed that all life had always been the way it was; unchanged. I think it was only a century or two before Darwin that it was realized that there had been times when different things lived on Earth.

Then there is only the question of initial orgin. I don't know what was thought about that. Maybe "I don't know."


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