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Dear "agnostics": You're atheists, get over it.

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posted on May, 5 2011 @ 12:53 PM
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reply to post by IamBoon
 


I've actually never met an "agnostic" (not saying they don't exist, just a personal experience thing) who believes in the metaphysical...well, except for a single agnostic theist.




posted on May, 5 2011 @ 12:54 PM
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reply to post by mbartelsm
 


I'm saying the dictionary definition (which is based on common usage) is often wrong. I've actually stated that before. Now, until you stop engaging in logical fallacies (like this argument from authority right here), why should I bother responding to you?



posted on May, 5 2011 @ 12:56 PM
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reply to post by Shamatt
 


I'm not sticking to any sort of 'literal' interpretation of the word, I'm sticking to the simplest and most explanatory definition. You're the one that's just trying to toss any possibility of definitions into the air. We are not engaging in some sort of colloquial discourse here, I'm trying to bring up academic language.

I mean, I'm a member of the species Homo Sapiens...but I wouldn't give it that way if I were asked by some random person.

What I was advocating was that we adopt the academic language for the term 'atheism', which is actually correct and defensible, as a reasonable standard. Why? Well, what's the difference between the typical 'agnostic' and the typical 'atheist'? It's what they call themselves. Neither believes in a deity, and one of those words actually means something about not believing in a deity. One word refers to knowledge, the other refers to theistic belief.

Agnostics happen to be atheists. They are not separate from that group...unless they happen to be agnostic theists, but that's an entirely different story there.

Of course, you'd rather just lob personal attacks against me rather than just addressing my points. You can't simply say "Words don't have definitions" and leave it at that because then you're just tossing the idea of semantic clarity out the window. I've actually provided reasoning to my call to unify the definition. That's why I'm saying you're wrong...because you don't really have any reasoning. You'd just like to lob accusations of arrogance and accusing me of missing out on some portion of human interaction.

If you can provide a good reason to not take the word 'atheist' to literally mean "lack of belief in a deity", I'll listen to your argument...but you've not provided one.



posted on May, 5 2011 @ 12:58 PM
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I'd just like to ask everyone something:

What is a theist?

Answer: Someone who believes in one (monotheist) or more (polytheist) deities.

Now...what would that make an atheist?

Answer: Someone who does not believe in one or more deities.

What is so hard to accept about that? Why is it so hard to accept that the opposite of belief is not believing?



posted on May, 5 2011 @ 01:09 PM
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I will simply state a personal thought since for myself there is no broad brush strokes in life. Everyone has personal reasons to believe or not to in things. Here is mine, I am not a person who says things do not exist without having proof into that concept. So with regards to God or Gods I would have to say having no definitive proof either way leaves the concepts open. So until there is conclusive proof other wise I will continue to leave the question open. There is other concepts that close the question with a negative or an affirmative, that is not where my stance is.

There is a difference in belief and proof of concept that is not that hard to understand I hope.
edit on 5/5/1111 by Golithion because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 5 2011 @ 01:10 PM
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Originally posted by madnessinmysoul
reply to post by Lighterside
 
Hey look, it's someone who doesn't understand metaphors. Soul, consciousness, product of brain meat, whatever you want to call it.


Thank you for teaching me about a metaphor. I would have never gotten that if not for your brilliant expertise.

In all seriousness though. After reviewing your thread, it's clear to me that this is nothing more than troll bait. Every response of yours is met with condescending remarks. I doubt you're seeking to engage a serious debate on the matter, rather, I see nothing more than this being a trumpet to spout your stubbornness from a high horse, putting others with a different opinion down in order to claim your place as the authority of your views.

Whether or not I agree or disagree with any of your views, your approach to the matter shows me that I ought to avoid your threads all together, which is what I intend to do.

Keep trumpeting - LS Out (drop mic)



posted on May, 5 2011 @ 02:42 PM
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Originally posted by madnessinmysoul
This is not a message of confrontation, merely a message of solidarity. Those who call themselves 'agnostic' seem to think it means something entirely different than the term 'atheist'. It's really a simple question of whether or not you believe in any deity. It's a binary function. If you don't believe in any deity, you're an atheist. If you believe in one or more deities you're either a theist or a deist (though that's more of a distinction on the type of deity).


The term "agnostic" means you haven't come to any conclusion either way, or don't care.

You can try to force it into a "binary" choice, but the word will still means what it means regardless of your assertions.

That's why we invent words: to express ideas that are more complex than just "true" or "false," for example green or blue.



("There are no blue or green! There is only BLUEGREEN!")

In some cultures that would be correct, but thankfully we're not all the same.


Give it some thought some time.

edit on 5-5-2011 by bsbray11 because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 5 2011 @ 04:43 PM
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reply to post by Lighterside
 


I don't get why you're bothering to contribute to this thread...you're not really contributing anything except unabashed personal attacks.



posted on May, 5 2011 @ 04:44 PM
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reply to post by Golithion
 


Yes...but you're currently not believing...which means you're an atheist. And, like myself, you're open to possibly being wrong even though there's no compelling evidence as of yet.

Being an atheist isn't an absolutist or concrete position, it's merely a state of not being a theist or deist.



posted on May, 5 2011 @ 04:47 PM
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reply to post by bsbray11
 



Originally posted by bsbray11
The term "agnostic" means you haven't come to any conclusion either way, or don't care.


...you're still an atheist if you haven't come to a conclusion. Being an atheist merely means you don't believe, not that you've actively chosen to not believe. Even those with complete ignorance of the concept of deities (like babies) would be considered atheists.



You can try to force it into a "binary" choice, but the word will still means what it means regardless of your assertions.


...it means 'one without knowledge'...as in someone not asserting epistemological certainty...which means its a modifier. I'm an agnostic atheist.

It's really a simple concept. If you haven't made up your mind, are you believing? If you are not believing, are you a theist? No? That makes you an atheist...an agnostic atheist...just like most atheists.



Give it some thought some time.

edit on 5-5-2011 by bsbray11 because: (no reason given)


I've given it plenty of thought, which is why I refrained from making this thread for more than a few months.



posted on May, 5 2011 @ 07:22 PM
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reply to post by madnessinmysoul
 


i belive agnostic maens you belive in god you just dont know which god that is



posted on May, 5 2011 @ 08:34 PM
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Originally posted by madnessinmysoul
...you're still an atheist if you haven't come to a conclusion.


Well that's according to you, but if somebody asks me I'm just going to say I'm agnostic/unreligious.


Being an atheist merely means you don't believe



Atheism is, in a broad sense, the rejection of belief in the existence of deities.[1] In a narrower sense, atheism is specifically the position that there are no deities.[2] Most inclusively, atheism is simply the absence of belief that any deities exist.[3] Atheism is contrasted with theism,[4][5] which in its most general form is the belief that at least one deity exists.[5][6]


According to Wikipedia, both views of agnosticism vs. atheism are common.

en.wikipedia.org...

At least when someone says they are "agnostic," you realize what they mean, as opposed to atheist.
edit on 5-5-2011 by bsbray11 because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 5 2011 @ 10:53 PM
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Originally posted by madnessinmysoul
If you can provide a good reason to not take the word 'atheist' to literally mean "lack of belief in a deity", I'll listen to your argument...but you've not provided one.


OK, I accept the challenge!

The world is not black and white. There are shades af grey and this is very important. There needs to be shades of grey or we can't communicate the subtelety of the human experience.

This is where we differ: Atheism is the beleif that there are no deities. Not a "lack of beleif that there is a deity". But in the wider sence, both of these descriptions are accurate in the current vernacular.

I don't see a need for these restrictive defenitions, however, which don't truly explain us. We want the shades of grey which will explain not only where we are but also how we got here.

Lets look at other derivatives of Theism

Pantheism - I beleive the world and everything in it is God
Autotheism - I beleive that God is in me/us - I/we are all God
Monotheism - I beleive there is 1 God
Polytheism - I beleive there are many Gods

Atheism - I beleive there is no God

Agnostic - I do not beleive there is a god, but there might be one.

It is therefore not true to say that I beleive there is no god, I beleive there might be a god.

This is the difference. We are not starting our descriptions of ourselves with the words "I beleive" or the words "I do not beleive" - we say "I don't know"

Think of agnostic as the quantum superpossition between Theism (Beleife for) and Atheism (Beleife against). It is both of these things untill more evidence is presented and a decission (Observation) can be made.


Being restricive and saying Atheism = non beleife means we loose too much inferred meaning!

You need to be able to understand the intention behind the words, and the current understanding allows for that. If I represent myself as an atheist it is understood I have an active disbelief in god. If I represent myself as an agnostic it is understood that I neither beleive nor disbeleive but that I am open to looking at evidence on either side of the argument. (Something an Atheist is by deffinition not willing to do) You would have me represent myself as an agnostic athiest - I feel this would just make me sound pretentious, and would not portray my real feelings.

So, can you see where I am comming from now? The Theist and the Atheist have an acive beleif. The agnostic does not.

The status quo works, and you have not made a compelling argument for changing it.
edit on 5-5-2011 by Shamatt because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 6 2011 @ 01:03 AM
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reply to post by madnessinmysoul
 


Originally posted by madnessinmysoul
And, like myself, you're open to possibly being wrong even though there's no compelling evidence as of yet.

This is not really related to the definition of atheist in any way, but it is related to being an agnostic. See, you might be open to the possibility of being proven wrong if there is compelling evidence, but to the agnostic, knowledge of the existence or non-existence of any God(s) is ESSENTIALLY UNKNOWABLE. There is never going to be an "compelling evidence".



Originally posted by madnessinmysoul
...it means 'one without knowledge'...as in someone not asserting epistemological certainty...which means its a modifier. I'm an agnostic atheist.

The original use of the term "agnostic" in it's present sense (Huxley) was certainly not as a modifier. While it may be used occasionally as a modifier now, it was (and still is) used as a noun in it's own right- the same as the word "atheist", in fact.

You (or someone you are reading?) is attempting to expand the definition of atheist. You said if you are not a theist, then you are an atheist? Many people (in this thread and otherwise) would completely disagree with you, which is where all the comments about "shades of grey" come in.

As per the definition (in common usage) which bsbray gave, atheism can mean "a belief that there are no gods" as well as "not believing in gods" or as you say "a lack of belief in gods". Now you may not want to hear this, but most people (in fact, I'd venture to say most people who are not atheists, as well as probably some atheists) understand "atheism" to mean "a belief that there are no gods" or "not believing in the existence of gods" (especially if they've not read up on these atheist personalities who have been attempting to expand the meaning of atheist), and if you ask me, the end result is essentially the same, no matter how much word-play is done.

And honestly, unfortunately, atheists have something of a bad rep for being opinionated, pushy people who have a habit of sarcastically denigrating their opponents and pretending the higher ground with regards to logic. This is, of course certainly not true for all atheists, but several high-profile atheists (Dawkins, Hitchens), don't help with this image. No reflection on you, of course
. Some people just don't want to be associated with that image. In that sense, to them, "atheist" == opinionated, and "agnostic" == unopinionated.
edit on 6-5-2011 by babloyi because: (no reason given)

edit on 6-5-2011 by babloyi because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 6 2011 @ 02:46 AM
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reply to post by babloyi
 


Of course, an atheist can be someone who has a belief that no deity exists...but that is a further step from simply not believing. Hence why we can distinguish agnostic atheists from gnostic atheists. An agnostic atheist is what I have described, and a gnostic atheist goes that further step of believing that no deity exists.

I'm not saying agnosticism doesn't exist...it's merely as part of atheism or theism.

And Huxley...well...he didn't bother to adequately come up with something reasonable that makes what he describes as an 'agnostic' properly separate from atheist.

Frankly, I'll agree with...I don't even remember who said it: "Agnostic is atheist writ polite"



posted on May, 6 2011 @ 02:48 AM
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reply to post by Shamatt
 


Why are you making atheism, the opposite of theism, out to be a positive claim? Can you give me a good reason why atheism means a positive belief in the non-existence of deities as opposed to the simple rejection of deity claims? Why is atheism a positive belief instead of a nonbelief?



posted on May, 6 2011 @ 02:50 AM
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reply to post by connorromanow
 


That would be an agnostic theist..well, one form of agnostic theist. Agnostic theists are an oddly diverse bunch.

You can not know if you're believing in the right deity, not know if any of the deities at all exist yet still believe, etc.



posted on May, 6 2011 @ 02:53 AM
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reply to post by bsbray11
 


So...the fact that you can cite usage means that...what? I'm sorry, but you haven't made a point. You seem to be simply arguing from authority here.


All I'm asking for is a unified front. Atheists and self-described 'agnostics' (at least those who are not agnostic theists) should just agree to use the word that actually describes them both. All agnostics are atheists, though not all atheists are agnostic.

And I don't tend to know what people are talking about when they say they're 'agnostic'...though I do tend to think they often don't have a grasp of what the word means.



posted on May, 6 2011 @ 03:31 AM
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Originally posted by madnessinmysoul
reply to post by Shamatt
 


Why are you making atheism, the opposite of theism, out to be a positive claim? Can you give me a good reason why atheism means a positive belief in the non-existence of deities as opposed to the simple rejection of deity claims? Why is atheism a positive belief instead of a nonbelief?


Because that is how the word is possitioned in the madern vernacular. That is what, on the whole, the word is understood to mean.

"I do not beleive" is a possative statement. It is a statement of possition.
"I do not know" is a negative statement, the lack of a possition.

You have failed to explain how "I do not know" can mean the same as "I do not beleive"

Look - you seem to be an expert in ignoring the questions I ask you and asking questions of your own to replace them. You keep passing responsability to proove to your oponent. It occurs to me that you are the one attempting to change the way we use these words - you make a case for changing the current meanings.

Agnostics are not a subset of Atheists. There is way too much stuff they do not agree on.

One last thing for you to ponder....

If a theist beleives in a deity, and an a-theist does not, then what about:

Gnostic - a possition of knowing. (Gnosticism is teacing the knowlege. It is from the greek gnosis which means knowledge)
a-gnostic - a possition of not knowing.

This uses your logic of the treatment of the word atheist on the word agnostic.

So, game is over matey. If atheism is not beleiving, then agnosticism is not knowing. Untill you can convince me that "I do not know" can mean the same as "I do not beleive" I'm done.



posted on May, 6 2011 @ 03:37 AM
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Originally posted by madnessinmysoul
reply to post by bsbray11
 


So...the fact that you can cite usage means that...what? I'm sorry, but you haven't made a point. You seem to be simply arguing from authority here.


All I'm asking for is a unified front. Atheists and self-described 'agnostics' (at least those who are not agnostic theists) should just agree to use the word that actually describes them both. All agnostics are atheists, though not all atheists are agnostic.

And I don't tend to know what people are talking about when they say they're 'agnostic'...though I do tend to think they often don't have a grasp of what the word means.


I think we are getting to the point where you don't even beleive what you are saying but youare too proud to back down.

This post is nonsence.

Whay would there be any unified front between atheists and agnostics - they are two different things!!!! Just because you say thay are not does not change the world outside your door, where everyong else thinks it is.

And you wonder why I called you arrogent? LOL

Pantheism - I beleive the world and everything in it is God
Autotheism - I beleive that God is in me/us - I/we are all God
Monotheism - I beleive there is 1 God
Polytheism - I beleive there are many Gods

Atheism - I beleive there is no God

Agnostic - I do not beleive there is a god, but there might be one.




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