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Is Atheism faith?

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Conscentia
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Postby Conscentia » Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:05 am

Seshephe wrote:Is atheism
"A subjective confidence or trust in a person, thing, deity, or in the doctrines or teachings of a religion, or view (e.g. having strong political faith) without empirical evidence. It can also be belief that is not based on proof."?

Yes, in the same way that scientific skepticism is faith. Ultimately one has to believe in the axioms of scientific skepticism and empiricism in order to embrace atheism, but then again, scientific skepticism as a philosophical approach proves itself through empirical evidence.
To paraphrase someone, "science works bitches" and "science is true whether you believe in it or not".

So is a belief founded on empiricism faith? Yes and no. But mostly no.

1. Science has nothing to do with atheism. Atheism is an absence of belief in any deity.
2. Scientific scepticism is not faith based - that's largely the point.
Last edited by Conscentia on Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:06 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Rationallia
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Postby Rationallia » Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:13 am

Atheism is the absence of faith, much like how black is what we call the absence of light. It might give off the illusion of being a 'colour', but in reality it is not.
Last edited by Rationallia on Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:15 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Risottia » Wed Jan 29, 2014 12:22 am

Seshephe wrote:Is atheism
"A subjective confidence or trust in a person, thing, deity, or in the doctrines or teachings of a religion, or view (e.g. having strong political faith) without empirical evidence. It can also be belief that is not based on proof."?

Yes, in the same way that scientific skepticism is faith.


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Blackhammer
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Postby Blackhammer » Wed Jan 29, 2014 5:43 am

Rationallia wrote:Atheism is the absence of faith, much like how black is what we call the absence of light. It might give off the illusion of being a 'colour', but in reality it is not.


I really like this explanation.
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Seshephe
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Postby Seshephe » Wed Jan 29, 2014 5:54 am

Conscentia wrote:
Seshephe wrote:Is atheism
"A subjective confidence or trust in a person, thing, deity, or in the doctrines or teachings of a religion, or view (e.g. having strong political faith) without empirical evidence. It can also be belief that is not based on proof."?

Yes, in the same way that scientific skepticism is faith. Ultimately one has to believe in the axioms of scientific skepticism and empiricism in order to embrace atheism, but then again, scientific skepticism as a philosophical approach proves itself through empirical evidence.
To paraphrase someone, "science works bitches" and "science is true whether you believe in it or not".

So is a belief founded on empiricism faith? Yes and no. But mostly no.

1. Science has nothing to do with atheism. Atheism is an absence of belief in any deity.
2. Scientific scepticism is not faith based - that's largely the point.

I didn't say that Atheism had anything to do with Science. I said that it had something to do with the philosophy of Scientific Skepticism. That is quite different.

"Scientific skepticism is also called rational skepticism, and it is sometimes referred to as skeptical inquiry.
The term scientific skepticism appears to have originated in the work of Carl Sagan, first in Contact (p. 306), and then in Billions and Billions (p. 135).[3][4]
A daughter of empiricism, scientific skepticism fundamentally rejects Platonic realism. Scientific skepticism is different from philosophical skepticism, which questions our ability to claim any knowledge about the nature of the world and how we perceive it. Methodological skepticism, a systematic process of being skeptical about (or doubting) the truth of one's beliefs, is similar but distinct. Scientific skepticism embraces empiricism; in social science, scientific skepticism thus tends towards the positivist end of the spectrum of the positivism dispute, essentially rejecting antipositivism and qualitative research[citation needed], as well as other research approaches that do not follow a rule-based form of scientific method as unscientific or non-scientific. The New Skepticism described by Paul Kurtz is scientific skepticism.[5] Magician, Jamy Ian Swiss stated that scientific skepticism is about "how to think, not what to think".[6]"
Last edited by Seshephe on Wed Jan 29, 2014 5:56 am, edited 1 time in total.


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Dyakovo
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Postby Dyakovo » Wed Jan 29, 2014 6:08 am

Seshephe wrote:
Conscentia wrote:1. Science has nothing to do with atheism. Atheism is an absence of belief in any deity.
2. Scientific scepticism is not faith based - that's largely the point.

I didn't say that Atheism had anything to do with Science. I said that it had something to do with the philosophy of Scientific Skepticism. That is quite different.

And yet still wrong.
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Postby Furious Grandmothers » Wed Jan 29, 2014 6:55 am

Seshephe wrote:
Conscentia wrote:1. Science has nothing to do with atheism. Atheism is an absence of belief in any deity.
2. Scientific scepticism is not faith based - that's largely the point.

I didn't say that Atheism had anything to do with Science. I said that it had something to do with the philosophy of Scientific Skepticism. That is quite different.

"Scientific skepticism is also called rational skepticism, and it is sometimes referred to as skeptical inquiry.
The term scientific skepticism appears to have originated in the work of Carl Sagan, first in Contact (p. 306), and then in Billions and Billions (p. 135).[3][4]
A daughter of empiricism, scientific skepticism fundamentally rejects Platonic realism. Scientific skepticism is different from philosophical skepticism, which questions our ability to claim any knowledge about the nature of the world and how we perceive it. Methodological skepticism, a systematic process of being skeptical about (or doubting) the truth of one's beliefs, is similar but distinct. Scientific skepticism embraces empiricism; in social science, scientific skepticism thus tends towards the positivist end of the spectrum of the positivism dispute, essentially rejecting antipositivism and qualitative research[citation needed], as well as other research approaches that do not follow a rule-based form of scientific method as unscientific or non-scientific. The New Skepticism described by Paul Kurtz is scientific skepticism.[5] Magician, Jamy Ian Swiss stated that scientific skepticism is about "how to think, not what to think".[6]"

No. Scientific Skepticism may be the reason for a small subset of atheists to be the way they are, but is in no way required for atheism. Case in point: Everyone who has not come across the concept of gods is by definition atheist.
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Conscentia
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Postby Conscentia » Wed Jan 29, 2014 8:54 am

Seshephe wrote:I didn't say that Atheism had anything to do with Science. I said that it had something to do with the philosophy of Scientific Skepticism. That is quite different.
[...]

Atheism is the absence of belief in any deity. Such belief may be absent for a variety of reasons - scientific scepticism isn't on every atheist's list of reasons.

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Postby Mkuki » Wed Jan 29, 2014 9:47 am

That's not what atheism is.
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Postby Ermarian » Wed Jan 29, 2014 10:20 am

Vashta Nerada wrote:
Ermarian wrote:Will Cthulhu rise out of the ocean tomorrow?

I sincerely hope not.


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I'll take "what's scarier than Cthulhu" for 100.
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Seshephe
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Postby Seshephe » Wed Jan 29, 2014 10:30 am

Furious Grandmothers wrote:
Seshephe wrote:I didn't say that Atheism had anything to do with Science. I said that it had something to do with the philosophy of Scientific Skepticism. That is quite different.

"Scientific skepticism is also called rational skepticism, and it is sometimes referred to as skeptical inquiry.
The term scientific skepticism appears to have originated in the work of Carl Sagan, first in Contact (p. 306), and then in Billions and Billions (p. 135).[3][4]
A daughter of empiricism, scientific skepticism fundamentally rejects Platonic realism. Scientific skepticism is different from philosophical skepticism, which questions our ability to claim any knowledge about the nature of the world and how we perceive it. Methodological skepticism, a systematic process of being skeptical about (or doubting) the truth of one's beliefs, is similar but distinct. Scientific skepticism embraces empiricism; in social science, scientific skepticism thus tends towards the positivist end of the spectrum of the positivism dispute, essentially rejecting antipositivism and qualitative research[citation needed], as well as other research approaches that do not follow a rule-based form of scientific method as unscientific or non-scientific. The New Skepticism described by Paul Kurtz is scientific skepticism.[5] Magician, Jamy Ian Swiss stated that scientific skepticism is about "how to think, not what to think".[6]"

No. Scientific Skepticism may be the reason for a small subset of atheists to be the way they are, but is in no way required for atheism. Case in point: Everyone who has not come across the concept of gods is by definition atheist.

Good point, though I think that your "small subset" includes most atheists today...
Last edited by Seshephe on Wed Jan 29, 2014 10:39 am, edited 1 time in total.


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Furious Grandmothers
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Postby Furious Grandmothers » Wed Jan 29, 2014 5:56 pm

Seshephe wrote:
Furious Grandmothers wrote:No. Scientific Skepticism may be the reason for a small subset of atheists to be the way they are, but is in no way required for atheism. Case in point: Everyone who has not come across the concept of gods is by definition atheist.

Good point, though I think that your "small subset" includes most atheists today...

Most? What proportion of the population in your part of the world actually know statistics, the philosophy behind skepticism, and how science actually works?
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Shaggai
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Postby Shaggai » Wed Jan 29, 2014 5:58 pm

Ermarian wrote:
Vashta Nerada wrote:I sincerely hope not.


Vashta Nerada


I'll take "what's scarier than Cthulhu" for 100.

I don't rise out of the ocean, I rise out of Egypt. Get it right.
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Postby Miopic » Mon Feb 03, 2014 4:51 am

Shaggai wrote:
Ermarian wrote:


I'll take "what's scarier than Cthulhu" for 100.

I don't rise out of the ocean, I rise out of Egypt. Get it right.

Your cthulu? I am the headmaster of your secondary cult of cthubat, the one you created to draw in the ladies remember?
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Arkhanic Assassins
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Postby Arkhanic Assassins » Mon Feb 03, 2014 5:02 am

Its simply hard to tell, some Atheist I met scarcely and almost never reveal their theological standpoint. Others will devotedly and zealously indoctrinate and lash out the minute you told them you believe in God.

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Callistaire
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Postby Callistaire » Mon Feb 03, 2014 5:03 am

It all depends on how you define Atheism.

Here is how I see it-

Agnosticism is the individual lack of belief in any particular faith (i.e. saying "I don't know")

Traditional Religion is the belief in a god or gods (or other spiritual force)

Atheism is the belief that in the entire universe there is no god/deity/mystical force.

Now most Atheists claim that their belief is backed up by science, however the lack of evidence of something is not proof it does not exist (black holes existed before we found evidence of them for example)

Furthermore, a being that lives outside of time and space and creates the universe (i.e god) would not leave overt evidence of its actions- it would simply have to create a big bang knowing exactly what would happen from every moment after the big bang (as it is not constrained by time or space and hence witnesses all space at all times, so could see into "the future" and know how the big bang would create worlds)

Hence, the idea that the lack of seeing a giant hand come out of the sky and pull everyones strings means god isn't responsible for it all is a fallacy.

The further problem is thus- if some divine being did step down out of the heavens to show us "god is real" there would be no way of us knowing if it truly a divine being or just a really powerful (alien or technological wise) being posing as a divine being.

Essentially, my point here is the only way to know for certain whether there is an omniscient being outside of time and space that created the universe.... would to be to become an omniscient being yourself to check.

Hence Agnosticism (the acceptance that we simply do not know whether there is a god) is in my opinion the only choice that is fully backed up by science. All alternative beliefs, including atheism, involves taking a leap of faith in saying that something you do not have concrete evidence for is true.


Of course, this is all my own two cents. I am not saying that Atheism is bad or that other religions are bad- it can be good to have faith. What I disagree with is the more pushy Atheists out there (in my experience I have known more pushy atheists than pushy christians) trying to convince me that their views are the only ones supported by science.

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Postby Grave_n_idle » Mon Feb 03, 2014 5:17 am

Callistaire wrote:It all depends on how you define Atheism.

Here is how I see it-

Agnosticism is the individual lack of belief in any particular faith (i.e. saying "I don't know")

Traditional Religion is the belief in a god or gods (or other spiritual force)

Atheism is the belief that in the entire universe there is no god/deity/mystical force.

Now most Atheists claim that their belief is backed up by science, however the lack of evidence of something is not proof it does not exist (black holes existed before we found evidence of them for example)

Furthermore, a being that lives outside of time and space and creates the universe (i.e god) would not leave overt evidence of its actions- it would simply have to create a big bang knowing exactly what would happen from every moment after the big bang (as it is not constrained by time or space and hence witnesses all space at all times, so could see into "the future" and know how the big bang would create worlds)

Hence, the idea that the lack of seeing a giant hand come out of the sky and pull everyones strings means god isn't responsible for it all is a fallacy.

The further problem is thus- if some divine being did step down out of the heavens to show us "god is real" there would be no way of us knowing if it truly a divine being or just a really powerful (alien or technological wise) being posing as a divine being.

Essentially, my point here is the only way to know for certain whether there is an omniscient being outside of time and space that created the universe.... would to be to become an omniscient being yourself to check.

Hence Agnosticism (the acceptance that we simply do not know whether there is a god) is in my opinion the only choice that is fully backed up by science. All alternative beliefs, including atheism, involves taking a leap of faith in saying that something you do not have concrete evidence for is true.


Of course, this is all my own two cents. I am not saying that Atheism is bad or that other religions are bad- it can be good to have faith. What I disagree with is the more pushy Atheists out there (in my experience I have known more pushy atheists than pushy christians) trying to convince me that their views are the only ones supported by science.


Agnosticism isn't an alternative to atheism or theism.

I'm an agnostic atheist - I don't believe in any god(s), and I don't think it's really possible to KNOW for sure.

The agnosticism is the not-knowing part (hence a-gnostic), and the atheism is what you're left with when you don't have theism.
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Czechanada
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Postby Czechanada » Mon Feb 03, 2014 5:51 am

Dyakovo wrote:
Czechanada wrote:Atheism is faith in that atheists have faith in that Hitler wasn't an atheist as that disparages atheism.

This is easily one of the stupidest things you've posted.


Well, one argument used by some theists is that atheists lack morality since they do not have a chief moral arbitrator that is god. Thus, atheism has to make the effort to appear moral.
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Postby The Flutterlands » Mon Feb 03, 2014 5:53 am

Regnum Dominae wrote:Of course not. Atheism is a lack of faith.


My thoughts exactly.
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Postby Seshephe » Mon Feb 03, 2014 5:57 am

Furious Grandmothers wrote:
Seshephe wrote:Good point, though I think that your "small subset" includes most atheists today...

Most? What proportion of the population in your part of the world actually know statistics, the philosophy behind skepticism, and how science actually works?

Most.


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Postby Kouralia » Mon Feb 03, 2014 5:58 am

Czechanada wrote: Thus, atheism has to make the effort to appear moral.

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Postby L Ron Cupboard » Mon Feb 03, 2014 6:03 am

Czechanada wrote:Well, one argument used by some theists is that atheists lack morality since they do not have a chief moral arbitrator that is god. Thus, atheism has to make the effort to appear moral.


If you can't tell right from wrong you don't lack a god, you lack empathy.
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Postby The USOT » Mon Feb 03, 2014 6:19 am

L Ron Cupboard wrote:
Czechanada wrote:Well, one argument used by some theists is that atheists lack morality since they do not have a chief moral arbitrator that is god. Thus, atheism has to make the effort to appear moral.


If you can't tell right from wrong you don't lack a god, you lack empathy.

Not even that.

I mean even those without empathy tend to rationalise themselves into w.e. behaviour they are doing as being good. Whilst people may disagree over what is moral, having a sense of morality seems to be a pretty natural thing. Merely look at basic primate morality and you will find that the general core trait of "what is good for my wellbeing/what deal for wellbeing can I make" is pretty core to ape behaviour, both from the altruistic and egoistic perspectives.
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Postby Vixia » Mon Feb 03, 2014 6:23 am

Atheism is not a religion, therefore it is not a faith.
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Postby Grave_n_idle » Mon Feb 03, 2014 7:06 am

Czechanada wrote:
Dyakovo wrote:This is easily one of the stupidest things you've posted.


Well, one argument used by some theists is that atheists lack morality since they do not have a chief moral arbitrator that is god. Thus, atheism has to make the effort to appear moral.


Yes, theists often argue that there can't be morality without a god. It's a silly argument, easily discounted by pragmatic altruism.
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