atheistic fallacy

evolutionary agent's picture

I, being an agnostic, do not think that the existence can be logically or philosophically demonstrated. Furthermore, I do not believe that the existence of a god is probable even, however I would never assert that it is impossible that a god could exist. That is my problem with atheism, it is just as dogmatic and insular as theism. You pronounce to know what you cannot know. A common logical fallacy which applies to almost all atheistic arguments is the argumentum ad ignorantiam, or the argument from ignorance. Because there is no evidence in favor of the existence of God, God therefore does not exist. Lack of proof is not proof. I'd like to hear some comments concerning this.

[i]Lauren

evolutionary agent's picture

just to note

I'm just asking out of curiosity and to further understand Atheists position and, possibly, incite some thought in those who may dogmatically assert the non-existence of a god.

[i]Lauren

Quote:Furthermore, I do not

Quote:
Furthermore, I do not believe that the existence of a god is probable even, however I would never assert that it is impossible that a god could exist. That is my problem with atheism, it is just as dogmatic and insular as theism.

Most atheists do not assert that a god cannot exist. They merely lack belief in one. An atheist is someone who lacks god-belief.

Those who do assert the impossibility of god are talking about a particular brand of god whose attributes are self-contradictory.

Personally, I do not assert that gods are impossible; I only assert that they do not exist. One is perfectly justified in doing this precisely like one is justified in asserting that unicorns do not exist.

+1. Kemono describes my own

+1. Kemono describes my own position.

Sapient's picture

[quote however I would never

Quote:
however I would never assert that it is impossible that a god could exist. That is my problem with atheism, it is just as dogmatic and insular as theism.

Yes, but you would assert to understand the definition of agnostic and atheist without understanding them. Such an assertion one might argue is more pompous than actually denying a god could exist. Atheism isn't simply defined as people who "deny" a god can exist.

See this prominent link on our site:
http://www.rationalresponders.com/am_i_agnostic_or_atheist

The rest of your argument is incorrect and moot.

- Brian Sapient


Buy popular atheist books and support the Rational Response Squad at the same time on Amazon.

averyv's picture

atheism is not necessarily

atheism is not necessarily 'just as dogmatic and insular as theism', but it certainly can be. you may not agree with this point, but its roots are found in the 'strong atheists' as described by the video at your link.

if we agree that 'dogma' is an established belief, discounting that it must be of a religion, accepting that a government or other system may also be dogmatic, we can see proof in the video of the link that you gave, which directly disagrees with the assertions made in the condescending post above it.

as an agnostic theist, as described in the video, i find the melding of the terms 'agnostic' and 'atheist' not only disconcerting, but another newspeak-y attempt at controlling language.

theism deals in belief, gnostisicm deals i knowledge. if you do not know if there is a god or not, you are agnostic. if you do not believe in a or any god or gods, you are atheist. if you believe there is no god or gods, you are a 'strong atheist', according to the video, but a believer just as much as any theist.

atheism as a stance that claims only that 'i do not believe in a god or gods' is not dogmatic. atheism that claims 'i believe there is no god.' is a belief structure of its own. i think, many times, individuals who are 'non-theists' or something like that hide behind the guise of 'atheism' to make themselves appear to be based in fact instead of simple belief.

"In depriving myself of the acorns... what have we learned? Nothing! Not one of us has learned!
"Which isn't my point, but very well could have been."
— Ashley Raymond, Olympia, 1989

Sapient's picture

Calling people who "believe

Calling people who "believe there is no god" dogmatic, is like calling people who "believe there are no sugar pixies" dogmatic.

- Brian Sapient


Buy popular atheist books and support the Rational Response Squad at the same time on Amazon.

averyv's picture

strictly speaking, as far as

strictly speaking, as far as i am concerned, anyone who positively believes anything in a structured way has a dogma. i do not know of anyone who believes there are no pixies quite like i know people who believe there is no god. perhaps 'dogmatic' is not as apt a complaint as 'mindless fervency'.

"In depriving myself of the acorns... what have we learned? Nothing! Not one of us has learned!
"Which isn't my point, but very well could have been."
— Ashley Raymond, Olympia, 1989

Sapient's picture

Quote:strictly speaking, as

Quote:
strictly speaking, as far as i am concerned, anyone who positively believes anything in a structured way has a dogma.

Not if we define dogma to be an assertion that is unprovable. There are plenty of assertions that are provable.

Quote:
i do not know of anyone who believes there are no pixies quite like i know people who believe there is no god.

Moot.

Quote:
perhaps 'dogmatic' is not as apt a complaint as 'mindless fervency'.

I've met quite a few strong atheists that were neither mindless or fervent. Here's one that certainly isn't "mindless." I don't have a good example of a non fervent strong atheist handy, mostly because they aren't fervent enough to have their thoughts laid out before us.

- Brian Sapient


Buy popular atheist books and support the Rational Response Squad at the same time on Amazon.

averyv's picture

Quote:Not if we define dogma

Quote:
Not if we define dogma to be an assertion that is unprovable. There are plenty of assertions that are provable.

then prove that there is no god and i will agree that 'strong atheism' is not dogmatic.
Quote:
I've met quite a few strong atheists that were neither mindless or fervent. Here's one that certainly isn't "mindless." I don't have a good example of a non fervent strong atheist handy, mostly because they aren't fervent enough to have their thoughts laid out before us.
my only point is that they believe without proof, and in those terms, is in no way different from theism.

"In depriving myself of the acorns... what have we learned? Nothing! Not one of us has learned!
"Which isn't my point, but very well could have been."
— Ashley Raymond, Olympia, 1989

Sapient's picture

Quote:then prove that there

Quote:
then prove that there is no god and i will agree that 'strong atheism' is not dogmatic.

I didn't say strong atheism wasn't dogmatic. I was refuting your claim that ALL "structured beliefs" are dogmatic.

Furthermore, I don't like arguing for strong atheism so I wont (it's not my specialty) but I've seen plenty of great arguments. Feel free to look into the link I sent you, a well known strong atheist. You could even confront him on his radio show that airs on Sundays from the left hand side of this page "Hellbound Allee Show." Although beware, he's "fervent" and EXTREMELY far from "mindless."

- Brian Sapient


Buy popular atheist books and support the Rational Response Squad at the same time on Amazon.

averyv's picture

ok, makes sense. ill check

ok, makes sense. ill check it out, thanks for the pointer and the link. i like the link.

evolutionary agent's picture

oh

thanks for knocking a straw man...
tis not what i asked.

Sapient's picture

Quote:thanks for knocking a

Quote:
thanks for knocking a straw man...

You're projecting, and now ignoring everything you were just taught. You presented the strawman that atheism dogmatically asserts that no god can exist. We responded to your strawman.

Quote:
tis not what i asked.

Well you really didn't ask anything at all. There isn't a question mark anywhere in your statement. Furthermore what you were trying to ask can't be answered as it was a strawman!

- Brian Sapient


Buy popular atheist books and support the Rational Response Squad at the same time on Amazon.

evolutionary agent

evolutionary agent wrote:
thanks for knocking a straw man...
tis not what i asked.

Which post are you referring to? It would help if you would use quotes.

As it is you who started the thread, it would be appreciated if you would respond to all bona fide replies. No-one likes talking to a wall. If you find an answer dissatisfactory, you should ask for clarification instead of just ignoring it.

AntiFaith's picture

Quote:Averyv :then prove

Quote:
Averyv :then prove that there is no god and i will agree that 'strong atheism' is not dogmatic.

All thoughts and beliefs are "structured" averyv, even irrational ones. But not all thoughts or beliefs parsimoniously correspond to reality as much as humanly possible ; theism is irrational.

It is rational and practical, to act as if something untestable isn't true, or real. Denial of the untestables existence is practical until there is evidences to prompt open mindedness or belief.

Strong atheism isn't dogmatic, it is practical....and God concepts can be disproven....oh my.... Evil
At least strong atheists are open minded to evidences, or a logical argument for something they logically assume does not exist -unlike argument from ignorance...

Theism is neither rational nor practical.

"We can only reason from what is; we can reason on actualities, but not on possibilities. "

-Thomas Paine

Rational memes can be useful and beneficial. Irrational memes can be useful or beneficial too sometimes so long as they are not taken seriously, but...a feather is to maccoroni as theism is to rationality! A can not be non-A!

Stick that in your hat Mr. Averyv on your way in to town! *giggle* .
Eye-wink Smiling

static_'s picture

To the original poster

This response is to the original poster.

You have your definitions gravely mixed up. I'm pretty sure one of the Rational Responder dudes cleared stuff up for ya, but there's more that I didn't see mentioned in other responses.

Too many people assume that it's "God" or "no God", and that's where the thought processes cease. You have to understand that, even if you are a strong atheist, simply sticking to "there's no God, therefore there's nothing beyond this world" is actually you still giving in to the brainwashing tactics of the theist majority. Just stick with "there's no God", pause there for a moment, carefully erase that word . . . "God" . . . from your mind . . . . and now start to think about what could be beyond this realm. You start to reach personal theories that are absolutely fascinating (ahem, at least, to you), and make you wonder why people stick to shallow "gods" that are based on nothing but human attributes. It's silly -- and dangerous.

I am a strong atheist and an agnostic spiritualist. So I guess you could call me . . . uh . . . a strong agnostic spiritualist atheist? I haven't exactly found a "branch" that meets up with my views one hundred percent, but I can describe my views to you in a single paragraph. My point is, to the original poster, that you need to broaden up your terms and understand that people aren't just "Theist, Agnostic, and Atheist". The variations are many.

AntiFaith's picture

There is a difference

There is a difference between thinking of what could be possible and
arguments from ignorance.

Something beyond this universe? I don't know. What ever is beyond this universe, if there is anything ,does not have to be sentient....no reasons to assume so. Good point static-

Any way to test such thoughts? We can try, but we do not have to hold such thoughts as our beliefs. We can think oustside of our box without being trapped in our box. Theism is a box that containes a person unwilling to look outside of the box ; Faith is a very strong leash..um ribbon.. that tightly holds the box closed for the theist.

Even agnostic theists usually do not like to think about other possibilities that do not include an afterlife or a skydaddy that has a plan that includes us....

Smiling

I am a strong atheist. My

I am a strong atheist. My position is that we do not possess any evidence to suggest that a god exists. Therefore a god does not exist. Furthermore, I realize that religion is a socio-psychological phenomenon that occurs within primitive societies to explain the unexplained, and god is simply one (albeit, key) element of this occurance.

Could a god exist? I do not know. I do not care. Hypotheticals that have no interaction whatsoever with the world I live in do not concern me. Agnosticism is intellectual cowardice, though it is not mutually exclusive with any other belief (so long as this belief is not fundamentalist).

An open mind is like a fortress with its gates unbarred and unguarded.

averyv's picture

Quote:All thoughts and

Quote:
All thoughts and beliefs are "structured" averyv, even irrational ones. But not all thoughts or beliefs parsimoniously correspond to reality as much as humanly possible

now describe to me how closely absolute reality matches with human percieved reality.

Quote:
Theism is neither rational nor practical.

i will refute this in full at a later time. someone is going to have to define 'rational' for me under your terms, tho.

Quote:
Rational memes can be useful and beneficial. Irrational memes can be useful or beneficial too sometimes so long as they are not taken seriously, but...a feather is to maccoroni as theism is to rationality! A can not be non-A!

my point almost exactly. almost. 'taken seriously', i think, is a bit of an oversimplification. but, the sentiment remains.

my hat thanks you for its new adornment. i will be showing it off at town hall in a fortnight Smiling

"In depriving myself of the acorns... what have we learned? Nothing! Not one of us has learned!
"Which isn't my point, but very well could have been."
— Ashley Raymond, Olympia, 1989

averyv's picture

Quote:Agnosticism is

Quote:
Agnosticism is intellectual cowardice

agnosticism is admission of fact. 'dont know' is a perfectly legitimate stance to take. especially given that its the fact of the matter for everyone.

"In depriving myself of the acorns... what have we learned? Nothing! Not one of us has learned!
"Which isn't my point, but very well could have been."
— Ashley Raymond, Olympia, 1989

averyv wrote:agnosticism is

averyv wrote:
agnosticism is admission of fact. 'dont know' is a perfectly legitimate stance to take. especially given that its the fact of the matter for everyone.

It is tautological: no-one actually knows (possesses justified true belief) as to the existence of God.

However, I feel that atheism is a much more practical stance to have. Does the agnostic ever wonder "oh my, if I'm wrong, I'll burn in hell! But I don't really know!?" I do not.

An open mind is like a fortress with its gates unbarred and unguarded.

todangst's picture

you're an atheist. Please

you're an atheist.

Please take a look at my article "Am I an agnostic..." available on the main board.

Those who know the good, do the good. - Socrates

Books on atheism.