I've re-read a few old threads and sometimes atheists are referred to as people who believe that no gods exist. This is generally met with a reply that atheists simply "don't believe in God."
I, however, would like to take another approach to the statement. I would like to attempt a defense for the position that I know that God does not exist. I don't believe God doesn't exist, I don't have faith that God doesn't exist, I don't simply have a lack of belief in God. I know that God doesn't exist. And I think that my basis is rational.
How do we "know" things? We first start with the assumption that it is possible for us to know anything about the existance we find ourselves in. We then take what data we can find and analyze it.
How do we "know" negative statements about the existance of things?
Example: "I know that Sharkfin soup does not exist on McDonald's menu." This is a clear example. Obviously the way we know this is to look at McDonald's menu to see if Sharkfin soup is available. If it is is not there, this statement is correct. If it is there, the statement is false.
Example: "I know that Santa Claus does not exist." This is more like the "I know that God does not exist" claim. But, again, the idea is the same as the previous example. We look for where the thing is supposed to be (North Pole? Chimneys during Christmas Eve night?) and see if the thing is there or not. In the case of a 'being', we are also able to check to see if certain things are done that this being is supposed to do (do presents appear underneath Christmas trees or in stockings hung on the fireplace mantle?)
But how do we *"know"* for sure-sure's and absolute truth's sake? We don't. But this is not a problem with "knowing" anything. We can't really ever *"know"* anything, even positive things. I drove to work today, it would be extremely rational and reasonable for me to say "I know my car is in the parking lot." Of course I don't *"know"* that as it could have been stolen. But saying so is still rational and reasonable. It is rational and reasonable because it is based upon the data I have found and analyzed. In obtaining new data (say, walking outside and noticing my car is missing), it is rational and reasonable to update my position.
Therefore, I know that God does not exist. I, and many other people, have looked for where God is proposed to exist for almost the entirety of human history. It is possible that "God's existance" is the most looked for thing ever. But no data has ever been obtained that indicates God's existance. We have also analyzed some of the things God has been proposed to have done (world-wide flood, bringing happiness/peace). And, again, the data results are no different than if God does not exist at all. Therefore, after obtaining the data and analyzing it, my position is that I know that God does not exist.
Oh, and Faith and Belief forum is where I was thinking, but I don't find it too important
Edited by Stile, : Forgot a very important "I know" in the line "it would be extremely rational and reasonable for me to say "I know my car is in the parking lot." Well, it's very important to me, anyway...
Edited by Stile, : Added the forum I think the thread should be in. And this is a lot of edits. You know who makes a lot of edits? Editors. People think Editors are smart, right?