Atheism, sociobiological construct?

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by BabyHeadCrab, Feb 19, 2008.

?
  1. Can be explained by Sociobiology

    10 vote(s)
    32.3%
  2. Cannot be explained by Sociobiology

    10 vote(s)
    32.3%
  3. undecided / other (post please)

    11 vote(s)
    35.5%
  1. Sulkdodds

    Sulkdodds Companion Cube

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    Well, even if God existed, I wouldn't see why I should have to obey him.

    EDIT: As it is, I believe there is no God because there's no evidence for Him. That is my mental process here.

    This is not, however, the topic of the thread. I'm going to be quite strict, I think, about keeping this on topic - because what atheism is or is not and why or why not you should believe in God are done to death and everybody smart enough has thought up their own answers by now anyway.
     
  2. theotherguy

    theotherguy Newbie

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    Bingo. I don't know why people keep arguing this. Theism requires a positive belief in a deity, atheism requires no positive action at all. It's defined merely as a lack or inability of belief.
     
  3. delusional

    delusional Tank

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    Bad definition, since denial implies theism is correct.
     
  4. MJ12

    MJ12 The Freeman

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    Well you wouldn't, athiest, thiest, or antithiest, you have freewill.

    Antitheism is just goofy though, because Theism is such a broad idea, theism can be applied to people of religion, and people who don't follow a religion but believe that there is some spiritual deity.

    Antitheism practically takes the position that any belief in a deity is harmful or wrong, and doesn't simply deny the idea of deity, but makes a general steriotype of those who do, and shows a strong resentment or hate towards those individuals or groups.
    Hating doesn't help anyone or anything.
     
  5. Pesmerga

    Pesmerga Newbie

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    DISBELIEF IN OR DENIAL.

    Key word "or".
     
  6. delusional

    delusional Tank

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    Well you can be antitheistic towards certain religions that you view as harmful, while merely atheistic towards religions that do little harm can you not?

    eg. I'm antitheistic towards revealed religion, while atheistic towards natural religion.
     
  7. MJ12

    MJ12 The Freeman

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    I suppose so, I dunno, it just seems antitheism seems like a set belief like theism or atheism. I dislike certain religious beliefs or blatantly dangerous interpretations of religious beliefs, but that doesn't nessisarily mean I am antitheistic, I just don't like certain actions and ideals.

    It kind of sounds as strange as if someone were to say- "I am a theist when it comes to christianity, but an atheist when it comes to Judaism", doesn't make sense, that would mean you could be an atheist, theist, and antitheist all at the same time?
     
  8. Sulkdodds

    Sulkdodds Companion Cube

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    How come 'antitheism' gets a really specific biased definition from you, but 'theism' can be vague or varied? :p

    Anyway, it's hard to qualify because we don't know what the teacher meant.

    Did he mean "antimonotheism"?
    Did he mean "materialism"?
    How about "Richard Dawkins"?
     
  9. MJ12

    MJ12 The Freeman

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    Okay, I see what you mean. I guess what I was trying to say would make more sense if I actually had a set of confirmed beliefs on the subject.

    I am still a bit reluctant to view the idea of antitheism as something I would approve of, I really dislike the idea of hating people or groups of people because of their beliefs, unless these beliefs are blatantly evil and cruel. But even so, hate does nothing to fix this.

    The way I see it is that Theists and Atheists have their own thing that they believe, but then it seems Antitheism steps into the realm of picking on and hating thiests as part of their ideology.
     
  10. PvtRyan

    PvtRyan Party Escort Bot

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    To beat on this deceased horse a little more:
    If atheism is a belief, is not collecting stamps a hobby? Is bald a haircolor?
     
  11. Sulkdodds

    Sulkdodds Companion Cube

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    No more than various forms of theist are all too ready to hate other theists or atheists. What's with the double standard? You're making untenable allowancess for the faithful. Because yeah, the theistic never hate anyone! It's exclusively antitheists who admonish the sinner and not the sin. Riiiight.

    I would say that "both sides are as bad as each other" if that was not A. a truism B. not necessarily actually true C. needlessly simplistic and D. a misleading angle which divides the discussion into two 'sides' of a battle whereras really they are multifarious and interweaving forms in a dance.

    You seem bound up in the idea that being 'anti' a creed entails hating the espouser of that creed. I don't see why that should be true. I am anti-war bbut I don't hate soldiers; I'm anti-clerical but I don't hate priests simply because they are priests. I could call myself anti-fascist, and yet I do not hate my friend Alex with his crypto-hitler beliefs, however much I might slap him for them. He seems to realise they are wrong and mad and yet slips into them like a comfortable chair. His friends have to supply the whoppee cushions.

    I guess what I'm saying is you're being apologetic without any real reason. You're making large allowances for theists of whatever stripe (they don't harm anyone, their beliefs are their own, etc) while refusing to make the same assumptions of 'antitheists', whoever they are (their belief, of course, strays close to abuse). I think that's because you're conceiving of it as a one-way relationship, like anti-theists are defined by having an enemy. But that's just as true for theism, which is not itself a neutral position nor an ahistorical constant.

    If this 'anti-theism' was about hating on specific people it'd be called anti-theist-ism. As it is, the term would appear to oppose the speech and not necessarily the speaker.

    ARGH, see what you've done now, you've made me linguistically equate 'oppose' and 'hate'. That's not truuuueee

    EDIT: If we have got this over with, perhaps we could discuss the OP's question now?
     
  12. MJ12

    MJ12 The Freeman

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    What? Dude, you completely misunderstood me, I never said theists "don't hate", my point was that antitheism is more than just a dissagreement, or a disbelief, most antitheists waste there time calling out religions just as much and fundamentalist churches do on other beliefs. My point is antitheism seems just as rediculous at rediculing everything non-stop as a religiously fundamental group is.
    Everyone's always too far left or too far right, theres hardly any middle ground or compromise, they are both just as biased, steriotypical, and missinformed as one another. It's childish and annoying rivalry from what I can see.
     
  13. Sulkdodds

    Sulkdodds Companion Cube

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    Fair enough. Just your original post absolutely implied what I thought it said:

    When you outline that there are two sides, and then claim that one in particular goes beyond the pale, then yeah, guess what, it looks like you're only criticising the one above the other.
     
  14. McCoy

    McCoy Newbie

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    I haven't really looked into Atheism, and do not hold any particular standing on the issue. But to tell you the truth, I hate people who criticize others because they are an atheist. Everyone has a choice, you can't force someone into being in a religion, and even though I am not an atheist (I'm agnostic/not reall decided Catholic) I respect their views. And I agree most of the time too.
     
  15. Eejit

    Eejit The Freeman

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    Seemed to me he was treating antitheists as a seperate group/subgroup.
     
  16. cheddarrr

    cheddarrr Newbie

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    atheism
    Main Entry:
    Pronunciation:
    \ˈā-thē-ˌi-zəm\
    Function:
    noun
    Etymology:
    Middle French ath?isme, from ath?e atheist, from Greek atheos godless, from a- + theos god
    Date:
    1546
    1 archaic : ungodliness, wickedness2 a: a disbelief in the existence of deity b: the doctrine that there is no deity
    ----------
    Thanks to good oL' Meriam Webster.. However, I am a Christian, this does not make me like the GREATER MAJORITY who are still stuck in the Joa de' Arc days. I believe that religion is somthing that You make awake to people through thoughts, actions, events, and stories that you can relate to others to help explain the unexplainable. If your like Cyberpitz and your thoughts differ from mine, insult my thoughts, or don't care to even accept them, that is your own to deal with. If a person is curious about what i think they will ask about it or atleast hint about it.


    I am not shy; Ijust know that people will think what they want to and "you can't lead a horse to water.' If you know what I mean.....



    1archaic : ungodliness, wickedness2 a: a disbelief in the existence of deity b: the doctrine that there is no deity
     
  17. Sulkdodds

    Sulkdodds Companion Cube

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    Ah, I see. My apologies - I rather misread.

    Nevertheless, it's still a bit like: "out of these groups, antitheism is the one that goes too far." Which seems a little silly. Not that I'm too bothered about arguing the point.
     
  18. Atomic_Piggy

    Atomic_Piggy Newbie

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    I don't think its biological. People are brainwashed at a young age, and so don't think about the idea of not being religious. My parents were non-practicing, yet one of my friends (who's a christian) parents were both practicing. I am an atheist, and wasn't brainwashed - he is a theist, and by remarkable conicidence, wasn't allowed to make his own choice in life. Biology has nothing to do with it IMO.
     
  19. nurizeko

    nurizeko Newbie

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    I think your professor needs to be fired for incompetence.

    If a teacher doesn't know shit they are supposed to, then they are obviously not qualified.
     
  20. Druckles

    Druckles Party Escort Bot

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    If everyone were raised collecting stamps, and to collect stamps was something everyone did, then not collecting stamps might be considered a class of its own.

    Bald can't be associated because it's not a choice. Unless you talk about skinheads. In which case it can be considered a style.

    To some people, such as children of strong, fundamentalist religionists, being an atheist is a belief.
    How can you get burnt for beliefs which aren't apparently beliefs?
     
  21. PvtRyan

    PvtRyan Party Escort Bot

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    But would it be a hobby?

    Hobby = occupying yourself with something you like in your free time.

    Collecting stamps = the hobby of collecting rare and unique stamps.

    Belief = a (irrational) conviction about the state of reality.

    Theism = the belief in a personal God.

    Atheism = the lack of belief in a personal God.

    Not-collecting stamps = not collecting stamps. It's not an action of any sorts. It's a label, dependant on the condition of whether or not you collect stamps. It doesn't fit the definiton of a hobby in any way. So logically, it's not a hobby. Not even if 99% of the world does collect stamps.

    Likewise, atheism doesn't fit the definition of a belief. There is no conviction or assumption about the state of reality present, for atheism is nothing. It's the lack of something. While I'm throwing around analogies, how about this one: theism is light, atheism is absolute darkness. It's the lack of light, but darkness isn't something that cancels out light. Darkness is nothing, it's the lack of something.


    . <---- the point






    \O/ <---- your head

    As you see, the point went way over your head.

    Ask the nutties.

    God, how can you people not get this? It's simple semantics for fuck's sake. This is the nth time I've pretty much posted the exact same thing.
     
  22. theotherguy

    theotherguy Newbie

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    So? It still wouldn't be a hobby.
    Even with skinheads, bald is not a hair color.

    Huh?

    What you are saying:
    "Some people say X is Y"
    "If X is not Y, how can people say X is Y?"
    C: X is Y

    That doesn't make any sense. Some people think atheism is a belief. Those people are wrong.
     
  23. Acepilotf14

    Acepilotf14 Sucked so much dick for this title

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    How can you know X is not Y?

    Atheism is the belief of not having beliefs.
    Atheists believe that the big bang started the universe.
    Atheists believe we came from monkeys.
    Like anarchy for governments.
     
  24. PvtRyan

    PvtRyan Party Escort Bot

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    Are you trolling or something? I pray to Richard Dawkins (our Great Prophet be Praised!) that you are.
     
  25. theotherguy

    theotherguy Newbie

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    Because by definition, atheism is not a belief.

    No. It is the lack of belief in a deity or deities.

    Some do, some don't. Just like some communists have mustaches and some don't. It's irrelevant to the point.

    Some do and some don't. Same as above.

    Anarchy as a political philosophy is the idea that there should be no formal governments, only informal social ties. So yes, anarchy can be considered a form of government, because people are governed by informal social ties.
     
  26. Glirk Dient

    Glirk Dient Newbie

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    Actually I do believe atheism is a belief. It is the belief that there are no higher powers controlling us. It isn't necessarily a lack of belief(as you would have if you were never introduced to any form of religion and assuming the brain isn't predisposed to make such logical leaps). Atheism is a belief because you believe that we are all there is.

    Also acepilot...your making assumptions. We don't go around saying that all christians believe in stoning unruly kids. Even though it says that in the bible and it also says you must obey everything in there...obviously all christians don't believe in that and it is an unfair assumption to make. So don't try to label atheists and put words/ideas in our mouth/head. The only real assumption you can make about an atheist is that they know there is no higher power.
     
  27. theotherguy

    theotherguy Newbie

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    *Sigh*

    There are two and only two categories when it comes to the condition: belief in a divine being or beings.

    The condition is a boolean:
    If (belief in divine being or beings) then Theist
    else
    Atheist

    Get the picture?
     
  28. Glirk Dient

    Glirk Dient Newbie

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    That's not true at all. An Atheist is a person who knows there is no god. Your trying to shove everyone into 2 groups when there is a vast spectrum of differences. What about the people who simply won't say either way because there is no way to know what is actually out there? Your "system" can't classify that person as they neither support nor deny the existence of a higher power.

    Atheism also isn't a "shove everyone who doesn't believe into this" category. It is a belief becuase we know there is no god. However we can't prove it so we are relying on our belief in the same way that theistic people do. Atheist is a specific group...much like a certain sect of christianity. Atheists aren't everyone who doesn't believe. I would say agnosticism would be the more general category and atheists would be a smaller sub division.
     
  29. delusional

    delusional Tank

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    I'm an atheist and I don't "know" that there is no God, when God is defined I'll say that God doesn't exist, but to the undefined God I don't know it doesn't exists or not, but I'm not going to take that step into believing this God exists.

    Atheism isn't a subdivision, it's very broad. It only stipulates that you lack a belief in God, which agnostics do as well, since they say you can't know God exists or not so they won't take that step in believing in God exists or that God doesn't exists. Agnostics lack a belief in God since they never took that step.
     
  30. Glirk Dient

    Glirk Dient Newbie

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    You sound more like an agnostic than an atheist. You believe there may be a higher power out there, but you don't think it is the standara judeo christian god, correct?

    Wiki defines atheism as...
    . An atheist is one who rejects the idea of gods and thus they "know" there is no god. I guess you could argue that "knowing" there is no god may only be strong atheists and not all atheists but that's simply semantics.

    Agnostics on the other hand are much more broad in that they merely fall under the category of "not knowing". Whether they simply don't know whats out there...or they think we can't know for certain or they just aren't sure what they believe. That is the difference between agnostic and atheist. Not knowing vs knowing there are no gods.
     
  31. theotherguy

    theotherguy Newbie

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    No. God. Damnit.


    THE QUESTION OF BELIEF IS BINARY
    1. Theist- Holds a positive belief in a diety
    2. Atheist- Does not

    THE QUESTION OF KNOWLEDGE IS ALSO BINARY
    1. Gnostic- Knows that there is/is not a god.
    2. Agnostic- Does not know, or does not believe it is possible to know, if there is a god or gods.


    AGNOSTICISM COMES IN MULTIPLE LEVELS
    1. Weak Agnostic- Lacks knowledge of a god.
    2. Strong Agnostic- Believes that it is impossible to know whether or not there is a god.

    ATHEISM AND AGNOSTICISM ARE NOT MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE
    1. Knowledge and belief are independent.

    THEREFORE YOU HAVE, WITH THESE TWO VARIABLES, THESE COMBINATIONS
    1. Weak Agnostic Atheist- Lacks knowledge and belief in a god.
    2. Strong Agnostic Atheist- Believes it is impossible to know there is a god, and lacks belief in that god.
    3. Gnostic Atheist- Knows that there is no god and does not believe.
    4. Weak Agnostic Theist- Lacks knowledge of a god, yet believes in a god on faith, without evidence.
    5. Strong Agnostic Theist- Believes it is impossible to know whether or not there is a god, and believes that this god exists.
    6. Gnostic Theist- Knows there is a god and believes.
    7. Denying Atheist- Knows there is a god, yet does not believe.
    8. Denying Theist- Knows there is no god, yet believes.
     
  32. Stigmata

    Stigmata The Freeman

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    I'm going to quote this every time someone starts the Atheist/Agnostic argument. I can guarantee I'm going to quote this more than once in this thread alone.
     
  33. delusional

    delusional Tank

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    Dictionaries don't define words, people define words, we define words. If the dictionary doesn't fit with how I define atheism then it's incorrect. Most definitions of atheism are biased, some say "immoral" is a synonym, which it is not. These definitions are biased since the majority of people are theists, theists are defining atheists, when atheists should be defining atheism.

    When I say that an alien abducted me, do you "know" that an alien didn't abduct me, or do you simply not believe me until I prove it?
     
  34. Absinthe

    Absinthe The Freeman

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    Man, I used to really enjoy getting all hot 'n bothered over topics like this. Y'know? Had a shitty day, get home, "Hey Absinthe, want to get mad and argue endlessly over what atheism is?" and I'd be like "Fuck yeah!". What happened to that spark...

    The only thing I wish for now is if people, regardless of however else they want to define the damn thing, would at the least stop treating agnosticism as exclusively distinct from it.
     
  35. Atomic_Piggy

    Atomic_Piggy Newbie

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    Oh. My. ****ing. God.

    Is this too difficult to wrap your mind around? Are you unable to fathom the idea of not having any religion at all?

    Athiesm is not a belief. FFS. It promises nothing, demands nothing, it is nothing. To use a tired analogy, not collecting stamps is not a hobby is it? Then athiesm isn't a belief. Get it in your head. Please.
     
  36. Glirk Dient

    Glirk Dient Newbie

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    In the state of mind I was in last night..yeah it may have been.

    I understand that at it's basic level atheism is the lack of belief. However once you begin making claims that god doesn't exist isn't that a belief?

    Also...some of you need a life if you freak out at people over the internet in a debate about atheism. :LOL: Usually a well constructed argument will do the point, but it seems some of you feel the need to be jerks which when trying to debate makes you look like an ass.
     
  37. Sulkdodds

    Sulkdodds Companion Cube

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    Dear Glirk,
    ATHEISM IS: I no believe that there is a god.
    ATHEISN'T: I is believe that there no a god.

    Simple.

    If this debate continues then I will close the thread. Talk about something more interesting.
     
  38. Krynn72

    Krynn72 The Freeman

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    Guys, I know this is an epic, >10 year bump, but I just wanted to let everyone know that I just did this (quoting theotherguy's post) in a Reddit thread.

    I remembered his post ten years later. TEN YEARS LATER. I actually think about it every time someone talks about atheism/theism. I know all us old members have talked about how this forum was formative for us when we were younger, but its really hit me this time. I remember theotherguys' post here, and remember specifically the frustrated, all caps "GOD. DAMNIT. NOT THIS SHIT AGAIN." Makes me smile every time because now when I hear/read someone start this conversation again, I think the same thing to myself.

    This forum was ****ing awesome, and I really miss it.

    I hope you guys are all doing well and that Cpt. Stern is living happily into his late 120s.
     
    • Useful Useful x 1
  39. Tollbooth Willie

    Tollbooth Willie The Freeman

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    I'm going to kick your ass so hard into Catholicism the priests will declare your supple ass too damaged to be touched even by the will of me, God.
     
  40. Al-

    Al- Medic

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    I just wanna post something here if you allow me.

    Jesus loves you!

    That Jesus that died in the cross for our sins, that Jesus that has nothing to do with religion, that Jesus that ressurected and is alive!

    Seek him, seek the truth. Not methods. Read the bible.

    He is returning
     
    #80 Al-, Aug 5, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2018

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