It seems like the notions that there is a God or there is not a God, are both founded in belief because there is not proof either way. Well there is proof, but not conclusive in either direction. So aren't organizations with set forth principles that are somewhat based in a faith religions. My premise is that Atheism is just another belief system that is a religion unto itself.
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Most atheists have never heard of them! I just looked on their website and they have 22,000 members. According to the 2015 Pew Religious Landscape survey 22.8% of the U. S. is atheist (About 73 Million) FFRF is an asterisk at most:)
Why is every dividing Christians from Atheists? There are tons of other choices.
@Besarien. The division here comes from the fact that Christianity is the primary religious influence in the Latin West. Even since its political collapse over 200 years ago, its mythology still influences Western culture.
Well said! Can i quote you?
Isn't it funny that this sounds so much like the "climate change debate"?
How can science prove or disprove what I feel and know? Science cannot and will not prove or disprove the ethereal. If you had proof substantial that there was no God we would not have this discussion. Science cannot measure my love.
You paint a clear picture of science which I accept as an authority on how God works,. Some Christians accept science. To me a Christian follows Jesus whether he was a person or an ideal. Plus there are atheistic religions like Buddhism and Jainism.
Austinstar - Of course. :)
Eric - That's the point. God isn't measurable by science because he's a literary device. Science measures reality.
Besarien - There are atheist religions, but atheism itself isn't a religion, nor is it faith-based.
Wow that is a great response. I think I am having trouble with when I person says "we believe". That just sounds like the Nicene creed or a statement of shared belief. Websters does not even require a "shared".
I agree that belief is fluid because Life, itself, is. Religious membership is also not prerequisite to belief in God. IE: Tradition may supersede belief in that context.
Eric, I think one can "believe" in precepts not religious in nature.
That's a good one! Thanks!
Linda you are right on -- ten years ago. Now look up FFRF and the third definition of religion in Websters. Marriage used to be between a man and woman. Atheism used to not be a religion. Times change. I don't like it. But so be it.
Is Buddhism not a religion? It is atheistic. Is Jainism not a religious? Jains would disagree with you if you say no. It too is atheistic. Religion is a varied and vast a concept. Atheism is in deed a religious concept.
Besarien, Buddha did not endorse any one Deity, but Buddhism does have deities. Green Tara, for one. H.H. the Dalai Lama does not say Buddhism is a religion, but a Middle Way. He states that if he has a religion, it is kindness.
And someone who does not believe in any deity is an atheist - granted. But when the gather together with dogma such as "we should disprove" then they are a religion.
We don't ask you to disprove, we ask you to actually prove your god exists. Prove your Eyewitness testimony is real. Prove your dogma. Not disprove something that you think actually exists. Prove that it does exist!
Now Religion is ambiguous as well.
If everyone shared your attitude this might be a happier place in which to live.
Are you saying atheists can't have a belief system? Do you really not have a belief system? Or do you have one that just doesn't include belief in a god?
The problem I have when I hear an atheist say something like "WE believe" is that it sounds just like dogma that churches use. The FFRF sounds just like a religion. Some Christians do not even follow a church. Interesting stuff.
The Foundation for Religious Freedom sounds like a religion to you? Freedom is not a religion. It's a political group, if it is anything that you feel you have to label. Conspiracy theorize much?
Cool. You are saying they get a free pass because they are atheists?
Surprisingly , not all of them are atheists. Why do you assume that? They try to represent freedom for and from religion. Their goal is to get religion out of politics. Keep religion in your home and places of worship and out of other's business.
Yes, OK I will buy that. I like it. But Websters is usually on the mark with definitions and their third states this about religion: : an interest, a belief, or an activity that is very important to a person or group. Religion ain't just churchy.
Washing your hands can become religious. NOT washing your hands isn't religious. I don't care what your THIRD definition says.
Good for you
It's hardly a fad. The ranks of those who identify as atheist, agnostic, or nonreligious continue to swell each passing year. I can relate to your difficulty in understanding a lack of belief in a god, as was once a theist myself. It's not going away
@Madan, As in the pursuit of knowledge is a fad? As in the Enlightenment? As in one man's God is another man's false idol? I've no stake either way, but Atheism a fad? Surely, you jest. Please support your definition of "fad"?
If you believe atheism is a religion or at least a religious choice then show a little respect for it. Why run down other people's beliefs? Is your own so weak you need other people's to seem like less in comparison?
Did you know there is other proof that is not scientific? Like "I saw him shoot her". Proof exists more in a court of law than in a laboratory.
Not true. Eye-witness testimony is the most unreliable testimony there is. I come from a family of cops and ihave seen lots of eye witness reports. They often sound like jibberish.
Austinstar, no doubt it is sometimes lousy proof but what atheist have to understand is that it is proof. We don't like the proof or it is lousy, does not change the fact it is proof. The Holy Bible is proof that it was written. That is just a fact.
The bible is a conglomerate of 66 pieces of writing assembled by the council of nicea - none of whom were eye witnesses to the events. The books were written by people who thought the earth was flat, and owning slaves was moral. Crappy book.
Harry Potter was written down too. Does that mean that J K Rowlings works are her eye witness proof that Hogwarts exists? No, it's proof she's a creative writer. Terry Pratchett's Discworld was written, it doesn't prove Ankh-Morepork exists.
And does Spiderman exist because some book says he lives in NYC? And can perform miracles?
Try to focus here folks.
Focus on what? Your belief that the bible is the best book ever written? Try reading all of the other books out there before you make that decision. Try reading it in the original versions.
I'll bet there are lots of things you believe exist that you personally have never seen physical proof of. Me too. Does Syria exist? I have never seen it. How about dark matter?
One can take an airplane to Syria. Dark matter is a hypothesis that is inferred by gravitational effects. Religion is a collection of mythologies that proport to bear witness to an unsubstantiated claim.
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What I like are the comments that start out "Atheists don't...." making it sound as though all Atheists think the same. And then the "we" statements. And in the same line they deny a dogma or commonly held belief.
I hope that we are endowed here with a tolerance. I kind of like no idol. I suppose I am guilty of designing my own faith. Crazy as it sounds I believe God is love and I love worshiping love. But I admit to being religious. I'll be careful
Eric, I don't believe in a god or gods or idols. I don't care that YOU believe.But if any Christian wants me to believe in their god, they need to PROVE to me that their god exists. As soon as you do that, I will believe. Faith is just a dream.
Wait a minute, Islam doesn't have any idol nor does Judaism. Faith factors in those religions & Christianity has a lot more symbols. Cross. Fish. Cesare Borgia's face as Christ. Mary. Angels. Devils. Halos. Saints. Popes. Bumper sticke
What about the meteorite at Meccah that all Muslims have to kiss? The crescent moon? Jews have the wailimg wall. The star of david. What do atheists have? I am not aware of any rituals or symbols of atheism.
I'm speaking of the number of comparative symbols, but yes, there are sacred sites, Pagan to Whatnot.
Darn good question you put forth. I agree that most atheists are without a faith based concept. But many have faith that God does not exist. There is no substantiating proof either way.We move into this new construct of what a religion is.
I have zero faith that a god or gods do not exist. You are wrong again, Eric.
A small group of atheists do claim to know that a god doesn't exist. This of course is foolish, and you and I recognize that, Eric. However, the vast majority of those who lack a god belief (atheists/agnostics) would NOT make that assertion.
I have not made that assertion either. I said, that i (meaning me, personally) do not believe in a god or gods. But i also don't place any faith in wondering about it. Perhaps you need the def of "faith" to be explained?
Austinstar, no offense intended but everything I've said so far has been in response to Eric. My appologies if you've thought anything I've said thus far was directed toward you.
Austinstar the beauty is quite clear. You cannot prove God does no exist. Therefor you must have faith God is not anything and is a construct only of men's minds. Damned if you do not have faith he does not exist.
You cannot prove that he does exist. Call me when you can do that. Ok?
Eric, I understand that you think non-belief in a deity is having faith just like religion, but I disagree. Faith has to have an OBJECT. You believe IN something or someone. For that reason alone, atheism can't be considered faith.
Cite something to invoke your stated truth. Belief and faith are not based in "something". God is without definition except to dictionaries that try. God is a personal thang. Look it up in websters. There is no basis for what you claim.
Eric. Stop trying to apologize for your faith or religion. You really don't have to do that. You are free to believe whatever is is that you want to believe. Just stop asking others to believe what YOU believe.
I disagree, Eric. Before I mentioned this did you have faith that the Mesopotamian god Nergal does not exist? Of course not. Belief is a positive action...you believe IN something.
Holy smokes -- did I ask someone to believe what I believe. I am apologetic about that. No way, my faith loves all other faiths and beliefs. If I sounded different I am sorry for that. I love my faith and live well in it. But I must respect other.
There are all kinds of atheism. Buddhists are atheists with their own belief system. All you have to do to be a Jain is believe in non-violence, no God needed. Some people say they are atheists simply because they don't believe in god/s.
Atheism by definition is the rejection of the idea of a God or multiple gods. If Buddhism acknowledges deities, it is not atheistic by full definition. Not endorsing a singular God is not synonymous with Atheism.
Check out new definition of religion -- the first one backs up your thought here the rest do not. You said "Atheists believe" and not "atheists know". Isn't that of the least bit of interest to you? I do not like being considered religious but I am.
You are arguing semantics, Eric. Perhaps it might be better stated as...."hold the position of", rather than "believe", but the point is quite clear regardless. Religion has a focal point of worship, does it not? God, money, a rock or a tree.
Don't confuse religion with theism. There are also a ton of atheistic and polytheistic religions too.
Theism is merely a belief in God, whether that be in adherence to one or many. One could be a theist & not be religiously inclined, true. I would put Deism in that category, but there is little confusion between Theism & its respective reli