I'd disagree with you there. You beleive there is no God. Even if you said, maybe there is, maybe there isn't you would no longer be an atheist, you'd be agnostic.
Wrong again. I don't believe in any gods, which is different. What you say is strong atheism and could be said to be a kind of irrational belief. I'm more of a weak atheist (no belief in deities rather than an outright denial) somewhat combined with ignosticism.
But can you prove there is no God? Of course not. And don't give me the "can't prove a negative" crap (atheist dogma at its most illogical). So how are you so sure there is no God? Faith.
Of course it's impossible to prove there's no god. Which is why I don't think that way. I simply don't believe in any of the ones I know of.
And of course you can't prove a negative. Want to prove me wrong? Provide conclusive proof of why I'm not God.
Heresy would be the same as any other religion. I remember wampswillion said something in her diary about wanting to participate in some christian ceremonies around christmas, even though she's an atheist. The atheists here threw a fit. It seemed very much the same as shouting "HERETIC!!!"
Huh? Who threw a fit? I think I found the diary, and all I see is some discussion about christmas being mostly not christian - which AFAIK is quite accurate.
There's no problem for an atheist to participate in a religious ritual or festivity, as for an atheist there's no religious meaning in it. Heck, I sort of celebrate it myself, but on new year's eve (the russian way). For me it's just another party with gifts and alcohol and devoid of any religious meaning. In fact, I'm not so keen on the whole gift giving part either. IMO, gifts have become a formality devoid of meaning. My parents even asked what to give me this year, which seems a perfect indicator of two things: That they feel like they should give me something, and that they have no clue what I'd like, and that second part is less than flattering. I'd appreciate a random gift for no particular reason a lot more.
Oh and there are atheist priests. There's that atheist dude (can't remember his name) that writes books that all the other atheists quote from. Looking at it objectively he is a priest.
He'd be a priest if he said things from above and they believed him without requiring proof. If he simply says things that make sense and can be verified, then no faith is needed.
And atheists stick together. The Dilbert guy suggested that Bill Gate should run for president. Why? Was it because he agreed with his political convictions? Does he admire how Gates ran MS? No. It was because Gates is an atheist. And a great many atheists agreed and thought it was a great idea.
Personally, I think the Dilbert guy is full of it. Mind, I do think that perhaps an atheist president could reduce the amount of madness in the world somewhat, but I don't think Gates is a good candidate.
Of course, you're bringing this issue up in a very shallow way. If the question is "Gates or Bush?" then perhaps in the global sense of things, Gates would have made a better president, although I'm quite sure I still wouldn't like him much.
Personally, I think a large problem with politics these days is people's obsession with small but controversial problems. I mean, who cares about boring issues such as the public debt if you can win voters by concentrating on issues like gay marriage?
Atheism: Belief that it is impossible any form of deity could exist.
Well, there's the problem. You only see the active "strong atheism" which implies active denial. I'm of the "weak atheism" sort. My denial is passive - I simply care as much about every known deity as you do about say, Zeus or Ra -- which is to say, not at all.
Despite the fact that it cannot be proven that such a deity does not exists a large amount of dogma relying on logical fallacies such as "you can't prove a negative therefore God doesn't exist"
There's a correct and an incorrect part there. You can't prove a negative as that'd require you to search the whole universe to prove the inexistence of something. Say, prove there's no polka dot patterned penguin hiding somewhere. A sane person would never accept such a challenge in the first place as you can't practically check every penguin in existence.
The "therefore God doesn't exist" is of course incorrect. An actual argument would go along the lines of "you can't prove a negative, so come back when you have a description of a deity that can be verified". Which makes perfect sense, as I have better things to do with my time than trying to think of ways to detect entities like Santa, Baba Yaga, invisible pink unicorns, YHWH and the Lord of Nightmares.
and "atheism is not a religion because I have defined atheism as being not religious"
You have a problem with the concept of a word being used to mean the lack of something? Here are a few for you:
- A bachelor is somebody who never been married
- A virgin is somebody who never had sex
- A teetotaler is somebody who completely abstains from consuming alcohol
and "the concept of God is illogical because I said so".
Pretty much all deities are illogical and self-inconsistent. For example, take YHWH, who is both omnipotent and omniscient. A few problems with that:
Since YHWH is defined as a being that's self-inconsistent, I reject its existence simply on the basis that as described, it doesn't make sense.
- Can YHWH create a rock he can't lift? If he can, then there's something he can't do: lift the rock. If he can't, then there's something he can't do: create a rock he can't lift.
- Can YHWH ask a question to which he wouldn't know the answer? If he can, then he's not omniscient, if he can't then he's not omnipotent.
Despite insisting that atheism is not a religion, atheist missionaries are commonly seen on Internet messaging boards trying to convert followers from other religions.
What missionaries? There's no "atheist missionary" per se, as there's nothing commanding such a thing. Sure, somebody bored enough might as well go and do that, but there's nothing saying that they have to do or not do it.
IMO, an "atheist missionary" is most likely to be trying to make fun of religion than to do a serious sort of "conversion"
<@chani> I *cannot* remember names. but I did memorize 214 digits of pi once.
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