The Religion of Theism, Atheism and Agnosticism.

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posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 04:19 PM
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reply to post by AfterInfinity
 


I've only heard about 3 blind men. Please tell me about the other 5 properties of the elephant.




posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 04:22 PM
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reply to post by schuyler
 



Atheists DO have "faith." They are quite sure there is no such thing as a deity. They can't prove this at all. They don't know, for sure, that there is no deity. They spend their time debunking some absurdities often found in religions, such as the Earth being made in 4004 BC, quite correctly show the logical absurdity of such beliefs, then jump to the conclusion that there is deity.


(I'm guessing the 'is' I underlined was a typo and you meant 'isn't.')

I was going to argue that you're wrong in your views of atheists. I still am, but to a much lesser extent as the semantics are interesting.

There are a lot of people who are 'atheist' in the sense they have no belief in God and don't think there is one. It's a casual understanding that has about as much significance in their lives as favouring coffee above tea...or vice versa - barely worthy of conversation or consideration. To characterise them as proponents of atheism or debunkers would be exceedingly in error.

Then I thought about the semantics.

The people I refer to above wouldn't really identify themselves as 'atheists.' This suggests that those who do define themselves as 'atheists' may well have a 'faith' and be wedded to a belief-system that renders them as deaf to opposing views as those who are fundamentally religious. So on that point, I agree with you.

It's reminiscent of the way the Greeks coined the pejorative 'barbarian' to render into otherness those that weren't like them. If we had a religiosity bell-curve that had the religious on one side and atheists on the other, the extremes could call each other barbarians in a demonstration of 'faith.'



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 04:23 PM
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reply to post by LesMisanthrope
 


My personal experience has been that atheists only get muddled in religious debates and conflicts when religion attempts to overstep its boundaries. Religion is a personal choice. You believe in whatever higher power you want to, that is your right as a human being (as is not believing in any of them). But, when someone tries to take that right, and negate another's right to not believe in that particular higher power, then atheists get involved. For example:

You can believe that YHVH made the Earth in 6 days, a little over 4000 years ago, and then rested on the 7th day. That is a personal belief, which you may cling to in your heart. All of science supports that the Earth is 13 billion and some odd years old though, and that our ancestors have been wandering around it for more than 100 thousand years. And that we, specifically, have been establishing communities for about 12,000 years. Nearly all of the solid scientific exploration points to this. So, when someone tries to shoehorn the 7 day creation argument into public school science classrooms, then atheists have to get involved, because that once-personal belief is now trying to remove the ability for real science, and real facts to explain what really happened.

The same thing happens when a law is passed/blocked limiting one person's freedoms or expanding another's. Like with current gay rights bills, or African-American civil rights and such. When you try to legislate said people based on religious dogma, then atheists have to get involved in order to make sure that reason, logic, and fact instead of belief, faith, and dogma determine the law of the land.

Atheism is as much a religion as bald is a hair color, or "off" is a TV channel.

~ Wandering Scribe



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 04:28 PM
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reply to post by Wandering Scribe
 


I know right!!!!

When someone makes laws for society based on these religious ideologies HOW THE $^&% do you not talk about it? THIS BLOWS MY $^&%ING MIND!!!!!!!!!!!!

Maybe a thousand years from now, when religion no longer effects our society, this thread would have purpose.

edit on 22-4-2013 by Wertdagf because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 04:44 PM
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Originally posted by AllIsOne
reply to post by NorEaster
 


I like your thought process, but how do you square your elaborate posts with the statement below your name in your avatar?



I guess I don't know what you mean. One is a quote that I found and really like, and the other is my own description of "truth". I don't see the conflict.



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 04:46 PM
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reply to post by Wertdagf
 



But lets not talk about it or some idiot on a forums will say its a religion

O NO!!!!! You have an opinion on ideology and fanaticism!?!?! Well, looks like your just as guilty as everyone else. I can see it now.... people thousands of years ago complaining that a debate about the existence of planets outside our solar system is pointless because we will never know.......

What point is there to discuss the possible source of the suns energy? We will never know.

What is the point of talking about consciousness? We will never know.

What is the point of discussing the possibility of life on other planets? We will never know.

..................Said the ancestors of LesMisanthrope... "lets just not talk about it, that will make progress!".


I didn't say anything about talking about it. I am speaking of the billboards, t-shirts, darwin fishes, the politicization, the turning of atheism beyond a mere opinion into a movement—and hence the mob-mentality, the group think, the irrationality, cult-like behaviour and close-mindedness involved in supporting a position hell-bent on telling people how and what they should believe.

I am talking about the fanaticism. I'm talking about the conviction. I'm talking about the absolutism. I'm talking about religion.

Discussion doesn't involve plugging ones ears and humming in the hopes that the criticisms will run away.



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 04:50 PM
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reply to post by Wandering Scribe
 



Atheism is as much a religion as bald is a hair color, or "off" is a TV channel.


Let me guess...it's as much a religion as abstinence is a sexual position. Yes I've heard them all. Does "baldness" claim itself the right hair style? Does "off" promote it's "offness"?



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 04:55 PM
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reply to post by LesMisanthrope
 


People showing support for an argument by putting a symbols on their cars?

Seems like your taking the most radical supporters of a symbol and then applying that to EVERYONE who even engages in discussion.

ITS A RELIGION!!!! THE SKY IS FALLING THE SKY IS FALLING!!!!!!



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 05:10 PM
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Is interesting to read some intelligent replies to this topic, as mostly this is a very passionate subject.
I don't know about other atheist, but let me clarify what is for me to be atheist.

Atheism is actually only a reaction to a world of theists. If there wouldn't be a faith in a God, there wouldn't be atheism. As simple as that. I don't believe that God doesn't exist, cause I have no idea. I don't spend time and energy trying to prove it's non-existence, or to convince others that their faith is a fantasy. It's just missing from my system of reference, exactly because I have no idea. I didn't invented a God just to prove it's non existence. As I see it so far, god is a very personal thing, like the ability to sing. For me it just doesn't exist.

Someone, somewhere in India believe that a god called Shiva is ruling over his life. Good for him, I respect that, but what it has to do with me? And the same for Krishna, and Allah, and Jesus, and all other gods out there. As long as I have no awareness or experience whatsoever about those gods, I can only shrug and go on with the real things in my life. If religion is at the basic level a leap of faith, I just don't have that kind of faith in me. I can't, I tried it.

So being atheist is in fact for me the impossibility of believing in something without a reasonable proof. I don't necessarily reject it, but it don't swallow it either based on faith. That's why I can't accept that atheism is also a faith, because is not. It's not an assumption either. I see the sky is blue, and someone tries to convince me that under that blue the sky is red. Ok, maybe it is so, maybe not. None of us ever saw that red, but he is convinced and believe in it with all his heart. Would the color of the sky change if I believe also? No, it will remain blue. Would my life be better because of this belief? Don't think so. So do I need to invest time and energy in that idea? Not really, life is complicated enough already.

We chose to believe or not to believe all kind of things in life. I chose to stick with what I can experience.

That's being an atheist in my point of view. The absence of faith, nothing more than that.
edit on 22-4-2013 by WhiteHat because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 05:16 PM
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reply to post by Kandinsky
 


While many may describe me as an atheist, I personally don't like the word. Atheism, to me, is similar to the word 'apathy', which means 'without emotion'. People automatically assume that atheism inherently involves a lack of appreciation for the beauty and significance of the world around us, which is far from being the case. I can marvel at the music of the spheres quite as easily and deeply as another may marvel at the sacrifice of Jesus. I like to marvel at the here and now, moving forward, instead of marveling at the then and was, hanging back. And yet atheists I have met like to take all that beauty and emotion and convert it into numbers, symbols. Signs of tangible logic. If it cannot be translated into something that exists independent of the mind or heart, it doesn't exist.

I stand somewhere in between the two. For the species of Homo Sapiens, there will always be a blur between fact and fiction, knowledge and believe, emotion and logic. Because each is just as intrinsically involved in our world and reality as the other, we cannot sacrifice the one without being destroyed by the other. As such, we will always have science and religion, yin and yang. But no one ever seems to realize that the two are simply two halves of interpreting the same reality. It is our world, spoken in two different languages. While the languages may understand things differently, that doesn't make either any less valid. It simply means each must learn to listen closely to the other before deciding that its own ideas are the only ideas worth having.

This is a lesson we would all do well to learn. And I believe that, whether by design or not, this is one of the greatest lessons our dualist world has to offer us as a species.


edit on 22-4-2013 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 05:19 PM
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My two cents:

A religion, to me, is any fundamental truth that someone holds that requires FAITH to believe in rather than evidence to support it.

In the long run, anything based on faith requires that the faith they hold manifests itself into reality as fact in order to become true and therefore no longer be a religion.

Some would argue that a religion is simply a way of life. A set of beliefs that one holds themselves to. Morals require faith to uphold simply because there is no fact or law stating that humanity has to uphold those moral beliefs, it is simply the faith of humanity in those morals as being "correct" which causes us to uphold them - theist and atheist alike. It all requires faith.

Atheists like to argue on the front of morals that religion is not required in order to lead a life or morality. This may be true but morals do require faith in the idea that morals are correct, and coincidentally many of the morals that are followed by moral individuals come from religious doctrine in the distant past.

You can argue semantics about whether or not atheists and agnostics are religions in and of themselves, but you cannot argue the simple fact that both require faith much the same way any religion does. Faith in an idea of no deities or the inability to prove any deities is faith just as much as any belief in a deity as neither stance can be proven with evidence - just a structure of belief - FAITH.

And to settle the argument we can simply look at the definition of FAITH.



noun
1. confidence or trust in a person or thing.
2. belief that is not based on proof.
3. belief in God or in the doctrines or teachings of religion.
4. belief in anything, as a code of ethics, standards of merit, etc.
5. a system of religious belief.


1. Atheists trust in a thing - the belief that their is no deity.
2. Atheists cannot provide proof that there is no deity.
3. Atheists believe in the teachings of Atheism in that many learn the ways from others and do not discovery it themselves.
4. Atheism is a belief and many claim to have their own withstanding morals and ethics.
5. Therefore Atheism is a faith based system of religious belief. A religion.

The same can be said with agnosticism.

Atheism also has its prominent people, such as Richard Dawkins who, for lack of a better term, is a preacher of Atheism. Is not the role of a preacher to pronounce a system of belief to the masses and convince them to adopt that belief? Atheism acts in the very same way.



In conclusion there is no doubt, as I have shown, that Atheism is indeed a faith based religion. It is the first in its particular belief (that is known), but so were the many religions that have cropped up in the past many thousands of years.



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 05:26 PM
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reply to post by TheNewRevolution
 





You can argue semantics about whether or not atheists and agnostics are religions in and of themselves, but you cannot argue the simple fact that both require faith much the same way any religion does. Faith in an idea of no deities or the inability to prove any deities is faith just as much as any belief in a deity as neither stance can be proven with evidence - just a structure of belief - FAITH.



I don't know? Does one really need faith to NOT believe in Santa?



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 05:32 PM
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reply to post by AllIsOne
 



I don't know? Does one really need faith to NOT believe in Santa?


If Santa were to exist, would you know about it? Or are you assuming that Santa's existence would be obvious? I think your question relies on the assumption that your knowledge is far more pervasive than it actually is. Perhaps Santa does exist and we're the idiots for believing the stories our great great grandparents made up about him to get us to behave. It wouldn't be the first time a mundane tale was modified for the benefit of those telling it.
edit on 22-4-2013 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 05:33 PM
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reply to post by LesMisanthrope
 


The reality is that atheism is the "right" choice when it comes to discerning what is real, factual, and existent. It may not be the most philosophically comforting choice, and it may not stroke the ego as much as theism, but it is the most intellectually honest choice we can make.

If you choose theism over atheism, then there's something which needs to be done. Namely, you must explain how Amun-Rē, Ba'al-Zebûl, Enlil, Marduk, Nuadha, Oðin, Tešub, YHVH, and Zeus are all the Supreme God who rules over everything, simultaneously. Or else you're just picking and choosing what to believe, which makes your religion nothing more than a superstition. At the same time, you must also explain how the sacrifices of Adonis, Attis, Ba'al-Zebûl, Baldr, Dumuzi, Inanna-Ištar, Jesus Christ, Khepra-Rē-Atum, Oðin, Osiris, Persephone, Utu-Šamaš, and countless others have all saved humanity from the finality of death.

But, I bet there's not a theist alive who would agree with that (well, very few at least). But that is the reality of theism. Either everyone is right, no one is right, or you present undeniable scientific facts, through evidence and repeatable tests, which support why you're the one who is right.

12,000 years later, science is still waiting for evidence that any god is more than just a collection of morality stories meant to help our ancestors understand life and its supposed meaning.

Mind you, I'm not an atheist. I absolutely love mythology and religion. But I understand the difference between faith and fact. I know that my faith is personal and private. And I choose to keep it that way. I act in the way that my faith tells me too, yet I don't throw a hissy-fit is somebody else acts differently. Maybe that is how their god commands them to act. And until I can demonstrate the existence of mine, then I have no right to chastise them for theirs, or their lack-of.

~ Wandering Scribe

edit on 22/4/13 by Wandering Scribe because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 05:35 PM
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reply to post by TheNewRevolution
 





1. Atheists trust in a thing - the belief that their is no deity.
2. Atheists cannot provide proof that there is no deity.
3. Atheists believe in the teachings of Atheism in that many learn the ways from others and do not discovery it themselves.
4. Atheism is a belief and many claim to have their own withstanding morals and ethics.
5. Therefore Atheism is a faith based system of religious belief. A religion.


You don't get it.

1. Atheist don't trust in their belief that there is no deity. They trust in what they can see. There is NO belief, that's the point. NO belief.
2. They don't need to prove anything, since they don't advance any belief. There is no theory of anti-god, they just ask to be shown a God.
3. Well, that's right, but those are parrots, like in every area of life.
4. Atheism is not a belief, but the absence of belief. And yes, the morals and ethics can be found in humans in general, with or without belief.
5. Is non-believing in Santa a belief in itself? Then atheism is also a religion.



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 05:38 PM
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reply to post by Wandering Scribe
 

Excellent put. Thank you for clarifying that.



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 05:45 PM
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Originally posted by AfterInfinity
reply to post by AllIsOne
 



I don't know? Does one really need faith to NOT believe in Santa?


If Santa were to exist, would you know about it? Or are you assuming that Santa's existence would be obvious? I think your question relies on the assumption that your knowledge is far more pervasive than it actually is. Perhaps Santa does exist and we're the idiots for believing the stories our great great grandparents made up about him to get us to behave. It wouldn't be the first time a mundane tale was modified for the benefit of those telling it.
edit on 22-4-2013 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)


And did you know that thunder is actually God sneezing, and the Tooth Fairy is a hot blonde ... You gotta be kidding me



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 05:47 PM
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reply to post by Wandering Scribe
 


Very nicely said. Personally, I believe there is something to be said for "stroking the ego", but balance is a very critical part of maintaining physical and psychological health. Too much stroking can be...hazardous. That's why I approve of spirituality and not religion.
edit on 22-4-2013 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 05:54 PM
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reply to post by WhiteHat
 


reply to post by AfterInfinity
 


Thanks folks.

I've never been able to understand why theists need to make atheism a religion. Nor, why theists cannot be satisfied accepting that their beliefs are personal; that faith is a private matter between them and their god, whomever that happens to be.

Maybe I was just raised differently.

~ Wandering Scribe



posted on Apr, 22 2013 @ 05:56 PM
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reply to post by Wandering Scribe
 



Thanks folks.

I've never been able to understand why theists need to make atheism a religion. Nor, why theists cannot be satisfied accepting that their beliefs are personal; that faith is a private matter between them and their god, whomever that happens to be.

Maybe I was just raised differently.


Sometimes, that's all it turns out to be - upbringing and all the variables that go along with it.
edit on 22-4-2013 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)





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