• Artemis
    1.9k
    You accused me of giving support to a psychologist definition. Now you don't seem willing to maintain that. I don't understand your game.David Mo

    Keep it up, Quixote.
  • 180 Proof
    1.5k
    Your muddle makes you sound like one of Frankie's fraught relations trying to brown-nose your way (back) into an inheritance ... Please stop. Your spin makes it even more clear that he can't defend his own muddle. :meh:
  • Qwex
    366
    An agnostic has a position on the matter. A baby is absolute zero.
  • Frank Apisa
    2k
    180 Proof
    685
    ↪David Mo Your muddle makes you sound like one of Frankie's fraught relations trying to brown-nose your way (back) into an inheritance ... Please stop. You're spin makes it even more clear that he can't defend his own muddle. :meh:
    180 Proof

    I can defend everything I have written. And with intelligent people, there usually is no need to do so. They get what I am saying...and understand it is reasonable.
  • VagabondSpectre
    1.9k
    There is no reason in the world why "a lack of 'belief' in gods"should be considered "the only necessary and sufficient quality" to be considered an atheist. In fact, it isn't!Frank Apisa

    Why should 'a belief in gods' be considered the only necessary and sufficient quality to be considered a theist?

    I'm not asking to imply an argument from etymology, but rather to point out that words are assigned meaning according to whim and use; they're not objective and discrete categories that necessarily or consistently order messy human ideas and beliefs.

    One...EVERY person I have ever known or know of who chooses to use the descriptor "atheist" uses it because that person WANTS TO. They choose to uses it. It is their choice to use it.Frank Apisa

    Whether or not we're choosing our own labels is not too relevant (and if it is, then we're just discussing semantics).

    Two, EVERY person I have ever known or know of chooses to do so because he/she either "believes" there are no gods or "believes" that it is more likely that no gods exist than that at least one god does.Frank Apisa

    I'm a self-labeled atheist who does not have a belief either way in the existence or non existence of all possible gods. I am a borderline theological non-cognitivist; I don't think most statements that include the word "god" are fully coherent. If I am being picky, I will state my full position as follows: I lack belief in any and all possible god or god(s).

    I do not meet either of those other necessities. I do NOT choose to use it or have it used of me...and I do NOT "believe" there are no gods nor that "it is more likely that there are no gods than that there is at least one."

    I am not an atheist.
    Frank Apisa

    Who is calling you an atheist? It's supposed to be a word that helps introduce a theological position, not an insult hurled at others.

    Your objection comes from your own interpretation of all atheism as necessarily hard atheism. It's just not the case. You're free to point to agnosticism to introduce your own position, but keep in mind that there is a philosophical meaning of the term which you might be obfuscating in doing so.

    The practical reason why atheism should be simply "lacks belief in god(s)" is because it is the tidiest pairing with the word theist, and describes the most non-theists in practice (and to a theist, what is a non-theist but a god-denying atheist?). In this sense, it simple means "not a theist". Hard atheism is not actually the most common form (I've explored this specific question quite a bit in the past during similar discussions). Only about 5-10% of atheists are willing to foolishly stand up and make the hard positive claim that no god(s) exist. Some will happily argue that Yaweh/Jehova/Jesus certainly are not existent gods, but then we're defining atheism with respect to specific theologies. (I'm a a hard a-Christian, but I'm not a hard a-Deist).

    Unless you believe in god(s), you're some kind of atheist in my book. A soft one by the sounds of it. You're also at least a weak agnostic because (I'm assuming) you believe that we presently do not have evidence pertaining to god or god(s) with which to take a position.
  • Qwex
    366
    You do hold a belief in God's non existence.

    Belief is not something whimsical and fairy-tale, belief is a real function. It's like a hypothesis, or guess.

    Someone asks you, do you think God exists? You say I believe not so. You may not say that but it is applicable.

    No babies aren't intrinsically atheistic. If Atheism is correct, there should be no God question. Saying no to God is good, but conflating that "no" to a now permenant position is stupid.

    Me: I said no and I mean no.

    You; I said no, but I don't really mean no. I mean yes but by saying no. Don't believe me? Who cares, belief is for fools.
  • VagabondSpectre
    1.9k
    You do hold a belief in God's non existence.

    Belief is not something whimsical and fairy-tale, belief is a real function. It's like a hypothesis, or guess.
    Qwex

    So when physicists create and explore hypotheses - guesses - they accept and believe them?

    I thought they proceeded to try and falsify them... Luckily, all possible gods cannot be falsified; it's a non-scientific claim to make...

    Someone asks you, do you think God exists? You say I believe not so. You may not say that but it is applicable.Qwex

    How dare I fence-sit...

    How dare I?

    No babies aren't intrinsically atheistic. If Atheism is correct, there should be no God question. Saying no to God is good, but conflating that "no" to a now permenant position is stupid.Qwex

    Atheism isn't correct or incorrect, it merely a rejection of belief. We can say babies aren't atheists because they have no rejection capacity, and I'm fine with that.

    Me: I said no and I mean no.

    You; I said no, but I don't really mean no. I mean yes but by saying no. Don't believe me? Who cares, belief is for fools.
    Qwex

    Right. Believing that you have knowledge about some kind of god is foolish...
  • Qwex
    366
    lot's of gibberish ensued, I parted
  • VagabondSpectre
    1.9k
    The Wotan calling the Quetzalcoatl blasphemous...
  • ep3265
    60
    Absolutely not, but it is telling of a cognitive dissonant mindset, which you may be able to jump on before it's too late.
  • Frank Apisa
    2k
    ep3265
    53
    ↪Frank Apisa Absolutely not, but it is telling of a cognitive dissonant mindset, which you may be able to jump on before it's too late.
    ep3265

    Oh, you are a psychologist...working from afar.

    You're not going to charge me, right?
  • ep3265
    60
    Wow, someone's defensive.
  • Frank Apisa
    2k
    Wow. Besides being a psychologist...you are a referee?

    Who ever woulda thunk it?
  • 180 Proof
    1.5k
    I can defend everything I have written.Frank Apisa
    Anytime now would be good a time to start. :sweat:
  • David Mo
    724
    Can you make a case as to why the latter should hold more weight?

    No, if you offer a compelling reason to adopt non-academic terminology. It can happen.
  • David Mo
    724
    "The practical reason why atheism should be simply "lacks belief in god(s)" is because it is the tidiest pairing with the word theist, and describes the most non-theists in practice"


    "Non-theist" fulfills the same function and has an additional advantage: it does not interfere with the academic and traditional meanings of atheism and agnosticism. I think this is a very good reason to respect them.
  • Frank Apisa
    2k
    180 Proof
    687
    I can defend everything I have written.
    — Frank Apisa
    Anytime now would be good a time to start.
    180 Proof

    I have been offering good, compelling arguments right along. You apparently refuse to acknowledge that...for some reason. I am sure it is a good reason for you...something that makes you feel better about yourself.

    In any case, a rehashing for the slow learner group:

    A large part of why I do not accept the atheistic mantra of “You are an atheist if you lack a ‘belief’ (in) God" is because it is a contrived statement. Essentially, it is saying that everyone is forced, by lexicographers and convention to be defined as an atheist if that is the situation. You are not allowed to choose "agnostic" and live with that alone...convention, alone, DEMANDS that you are an atheist.

    C’mon. Most of the atheists with whom I am dealing just in this thread have more spine than that! Well, maybe not you, Proof. But most.

    The reason most (probably ALL) of those who CHOOSE to use the word “atheist” as a descriptor…is that he/she “believes” that there are no gods…or he/she supposes that it is more likely that there are no gods than that there is at least one.

    I DON’T.

    So why does anyone think it is reasonable to insist that those of us who do not “believe” that there are no gods…AND WHO DO NOT think it is more likely that there are no gods than that there is at least one…should have the descriptor “atheist” imposed upon us?

    Why are there some atheists who insist we are forced to accept it?

    Why are there some atheist who insist that all babies are born atheists…rather than that all babies are born neither theistic, atheistic nor agnostic?

    Why does anyone suppose the former is a more logical way to deal with the word…than the latter?

    Why do those insistent atheists not just allow people who want to identify as atheists…do so; those who want to identify as agnostics…do so; and those who do not want a designation at all...do so...

    … without the imposition of the “atheist” designation?

    Why?
  • Pfhorrest
    2.8k
    Look, Frank, nobody is saying that you have to introduce yourself as an atheist. You're clearly also an agnostic; I'm getting the impression of a hard agnostic, who thinks knowledge about God is impossible. So calling yourself an agnostic is fine.

    But if other people mean by "atheist" someone who doesn't believe God exists (not "who believes God doesn't exist"), and your view falls under that umbrella, then you're also an atheist in that sense of the word. You don't have to identify yourself as one, but you don't get to tell other people (who don't believe God exists, but also don't believe God doesn't exist -- like you) that they aren't really atheists; and if they're really atheists, and you believe the same thing as them, then you are too, in that sense of the word, even if you don't want to call yourself that.
  • Frank Apisa
    2k
    Pfhorrest
    1.2k
    Look, Frank, nobody is saying that you have to introduce yourself as an atheist. You're clearly also an agnostic; I'm getting the impression of a hard agnostic, who thinks knowledge about God is impossible. So calling yourself an agnostic is fine.

    But if other people mean by "atheist" someone who doesn't believe God exists (not "who believes God doesn't exist"), and your view falls under that umbrella, then you're also an atheist in that sense of the word. You don't have to identify yourself as one, but you don't get to tell other people (who don't believe God exists, but also don't believe God doesn't exist -- like you) that they aren't really atheists; and if they're really atheists, and you believe the same thing as them, then you are too, in that sense of the word, even if you don't want to call yourself that.
    Pfhorrest

    I appreciate your sentiments, Phorrest...and I understand why you feel that way.

    Mostly this is NOT a problem. But on the Internet it does become one.

    I can tell you this...I have MANY friends in my non-cyber life who are atheists. They make no bones about it...and clearly and publicly declare themselves to be ATHEISTS. (We do not hide this stuff here in New Jersey.)

    Anyway, I have never had one of them insist that I am an atheist also by virtue of the fact that I do not believe any gods exist. They know I identify as an agnostic...and they accept that. Never once outside of the Internet have I ever had an atheist insist that ANYONE who does not have a "belief" that any gods exist...is perforce an atheist.

    In fact, on those occasions where I have spoken with atheistic friends on the issue...they have been skeptical of my mention of people who do. "C'mon," they say, "if you say you are NOT an atheist, but an agnostid, why would anyone challenge that?" And when I tell them that some people are so wedded to that notion that they insist that "some say that babies and toddlers are all atheists" they just shut the conversation off...usually with a "well, you are just talking to assholes then,"

    So...I am discussing it...here on the Internet where it happens. I thought I was doing so in a reasonable way...maybe with a jab here and there, but not being nasty or insulting.
  • 180 Proof
    1.5k
    Anyone can label themselves whatever they want. What's in a label right? The significant thing is whether or not a label designates a distinction that makes a difference. So consider (once more to the breach :roll:) ...

    A labels herself "1", which she describes as Belief That g/G.

    B labels himself "2", which he describes as No Belief That g/G.

    C labels herself "3", which she describes as Belief That No g/G; this, however, also implies No Belief That g/G.

    D* labels himself "4", which he describes as A Claim That g/G-Type Is Falsified; this, however, also implies Belief That No g/G-Token Which Belongs To g/G-Type ... which also implies No Belief That g/G.

    E labels herself "5", which she describes as Belief That All-Is-G (or All-In-G); this, however, also implies No Belief That g/G.

    F[rankie] labels himself "6", which he describes as neither Belief That g/G nor Belief That No g/G nor No Belief That g/G;

    in effect, however, this is indistinguishable from, or consistent with, No Belief That g/G -----> if the 'theoretical' difference of "6" & "2" is not a 'distinction without a practical (i.e. pragmatic, or existential) difference', such a difference has, or differences have, not yet been demonstrated by F[rankie] or any other "6".

    :sweat: - shhhh don't tell him that ...

    Caveat: Everyone is entitled to call oneself whatever strikes one's fancy but no one is  entitled to whatever presuppositions or implications one's self-descriptions necessitate. (Words, in fact, don't mean whatever the hell one arbitrarily says they mean, Humpty.)
  • Frank Apisa
    2k
    180 Proof
    695
    180 Proof

    The question now being debated here is whether it makes more sense for the word "atheist" to be used the way some atheists want it to be used...or to be used in the way I, and many other agnostics, prefer (which, in our opinion, makes a lot more sense.)

    The way atheists want to use it FORCES people who do not want to use it as an identifier...and people for whom it should NOT be used...to have it applied to them.

    The way we am suggesting....that problem does not apply.

    I, most assuredly, am NOT AN ATHEIST. I am an agnostic...BUT NOT AN ATHEIST, even though some of the debating atheists in this forum seem to insist I am. The babies in this world ARE NOT atheists, even though some of the debating atheists in this forum seem to insist they are.

    Albert Einstein insisted he was an agnostic...NOT AN ATHEIST.

    Stephen Hawking insisted he was an agnostic, but vehemently insisted that he was NOT AN ATHEIST.

    Carl Sagan insisted he was an agnostic...but INSISTED he was not an atheist.

    Would you take that same demeaning tone with them?

    The atheist's case is made of mush...especially as you present it, 180.

    Apparently you call yourself an atheist. My guess is that YOU "believe" there are no gods...or you "believe" it is more likely that there are no gods than that there is at least one.

    Are you saying I am wrong about that?
  • 180 Proof
    1.5k
    Are you saying I am wrong about that?Frank Apisa
    Not only saying so, I've easily demonstrated you're wrong several times already on this thread. And just for kicks, Frankie! But your only reply's always the same assertion without argument to the contrary that clumsily evades any direct, critical engagement with my, @DingoJones' or others' arguments; from the OP on your whiny special pleading, and tantrum foot-stomping, doesn't make what you say so no matter how many times you repeat yourself.

    Call yourself an "agnostic". Or a Klingon. Or Napoleon Bonaparte. You're not an "atheist". Gotcha! Because you're not philosophizing, Frankie, are you? No, you're just bloviating like those other 'net trolls you keep complaining about. Labels, as I've said, in themselves don't matter, but the concepts they indicate - what concepts precisely describe, their presuppositions & implications - do matter philosophically.

    Not to you though. And that's why you're the piñata du jure, Frank, because you're uncritical, uninformed, without intellectual - minimal scholarly - scruple, and incorrigible. So here we all are playing Pin The Tail On The "Agnostic" instead of dialectically and critically examining, for example, a genealogy of the concept, its uses misuses or abuses, and the ways in which it differs from other related concepts. Instead we're just Rodeo Clowning bulls___ like your OP, etc. :joke: :party: :clap:
  • Frank Apisa
    2k


    All those words in answer to my question...and with no answer.

    Here is my question again:

    Apparently you call yourself an atheist. My guess is that YOU "believe" there are no gods...or you "believe" it is more likely that there are no gods than that there is at least one.

    Are you saying I am wrong about that?


    I've dismissed all that attempt at distraction above...and will wait for you to give that question some thought, if your anger allows you to be capable of thought.
  • 180 Proof
    1.5k
    Here is my question again:

    Apparently you call yourself an atheist.
    Frank Apisa
    No. I prefer Freethinker ... or anti-theist.

    My guess is that YOU "believe" there are no gods...
    You guess wrong, Frankie, because either you've not read what I've written on this thread or you can't understand what I've written or both.

    ... or you "believe" it is more likely that there are no gods than that there is at least one.
    Not even wrong. Again.

    Are you saying I am wrong about that?
    As wrong, Frankie, as claiming you're (also) not a 'weak atheist'. :razz:
  • DingoJones
    1.9k


    Its amazing how low his reading comprehension is. You answered his question in the first line of your response, but it just doesnt sink in.
  • Frank Apisa
    2k
    700
    Here is my question again:

    Apparently you call yourself an atheist.
    — Frank Apisa
    No. I prefer Freethinker ... or atheologist.

    My guess is that YOU "believe" there are no gods...
    You guess wrong, Frankie, because either you've not read what I've written on this thread or you can't understand what I've written or both.

    ... or you "believe" it is more likely that there are no gods than that there is at least one.
    Not even wrong. Again.

    Are you saying I am wrong about that?
    As wrong, Frankie, as claiming you're (also) not a 'weak atheist'. :razz:
    180 Proof

    I am not "wrong", young man, that I am not an atheist...whether of the weak-headed type or the rock-headed variety.

    My guess about you apparently was wrong as regard to what you call yourself...but what can I say about a person who insists I am an atheist...and who also insists he is not!
  • Frank Apisa
    2k
    DingoJones
    1.5k
    ↪180 Proof

    Its amazing how low his reading comprehension is. You answered his question in the first line of your response, but it just doesnt sink in.
    DingoJones

    He did NOT answer my question in the first line of his response...

    ...and my reading comprehension and writing skills are way above average. Obviously a great deal higher than yours, as you displayed with this latest post of yours.
  • 180 Proof
    1.5k
    I am not "wrong", young manFrank Apisa
    :lol:

    ... my reading comprehension and writing skills are way above average. Obviously a great deal higher than yours ...Frank Apisa
    A "very stable genius", huh? :ok: :rofl:
  • Frank Apisa
    2k
    I am not a genius at all. But my reading comprehension and writing skills are way above average.
  • Pfhorrest
    2.8k
    Apparently you call yourself an atheist. My guess is that YOU "believe" there are no gods...or you "believe" it is more likely that there are no gods than that there is at least one.

    Are you saying I am wrong about that?
    Frank Apisa

    Not only saying so, I've easily demonstrated you're wrong several times already on this thread.180 Proof

    All those words in answer to my question...and with no answer.Frank Apisa

    Its amazing how low his reading comprehension is. You answered his question in the first line of your response, but it just doesnt sink in.DingoJones

    He did NOT answer my question in the first line of his response...Frank Apisa

    ...

    Are you saying I am wrong about that?Frank Apisa

    Not only saying so, I've easily demonstrated you're wrong several times already on this thread.180 Proof

    ...

    ...and my reading comprehension and writing skills are way above averageFrank Apisa

    :confused:

    I am not a geniusFrank Apisa

    :100:
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