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Ask an atheist Want to know atheists' viewpoints on things? Want to better understand the atheist worldview?
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  #11  
Old 20th July 2017, 06:29 PM
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Default Re: Which label is correct?

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billyboy11 said View Post
Hi All
My understanding is that an atheist doesn't reject anything, considers everything, and accepts only what can be proven. Am I right or am I wrong?
Cheers Bill
Hi billyboy, atheists may or may not exhibit all those traits. By definition atheism is only a position on one thing, lack of belief in god/gods.
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  #12  
Old 20th July 2017, 06:35 PM
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Default Re: Which label is correct?

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billyboy11 said View Post
Hi All
My understanding is that an atheist doesn't reject anything, considers everything, and accepts only what can be proven. Am I right or am I wrong?
Cheers Bill
Bill, atheists are a diverse bunch. The only common thread is a lack of belief in deities.

That said, most folks -on this forum at least- want o have good reasoning and evidence to accept anything. Proof is something that is in mathematics, and nowhere else.

Even science does not claim truth or proof. It just tests models of phenomena to destruction, and if it passes those test, tentative acceptance follows. But it is only as good as the next experiment or observation. That is how scientific knowledge grows.

So science is a special type of bollocks. It helps build space shuttles, cure diseases, build computers and all sort of other shit.

That si the difference between a belief system [which does not require evidence] and an investigative system like science.

The less assumptions about reality one makes, the more likely science, and scientists can get stuff right. What works, what is useful? The more you read about or practice science, the less certain you are about what reality really is. it is like an onion really, at least to me. Scales matter. How can a little ape like me comprehend a vast universe, or know what it is like to sit on a photon and enjoy the view? Our unconsidered opinions actually matter very little. Like relativity, how weird is that, or quantum mechanics?

That is why we leave any beliefs [if we have them] or opinions etc, outside the lab door, and let the evidence decide what reality is likely to be like.
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  #13  
Old 20th July 2017, 06:43 PM
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Default Re: Which label is correct?

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billyboy11 said View Post
My understanding is that an atheist doesn't reject anything, considers everything, and accepts only what can be proven. Am I right or am I wrong?
@billyboy - For practical purposes, not really. There are some things I in substance reject, because they are inconsistent with the evidence. So, I reject the proposition that there was a global flood, or a literal Adam and an Eve. Also, for all practical purposes, I reject the contention that Muhammed rode over the moon on a winged horse.

The following videos align fairly well with my thinking. All are worth a look :



[/QUOTE]
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Old 21st July 2017, 12:16 PM
Icho Tolot Icho Tolot is offline
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Default Re: Which label is correct?

Hello Bill,
Below follows a quote from the Atheist Foundation's philosophy:

"As there is no scientific evidence for supernatural phenomena, atheists reject belief in ‘God’, gods and other supernatural beings. The universe, the world in which we live, and the evolution of life, are entirely natural occurrences."

I am still learning about Atheism myself but must have been an Atheist for quite some time before I finally started to look at this more seriously. In my opinion, an Atheist does not reject God but rejects the belief in God. You cannot reject something that does not exist anyway. Also, do you reject, for instance, the Big Bang theory? The word 'theory' says it all. This theory has not (yet) been proven. So, I consider that many Atheists undoubtedly would accept the word of astronomers that the universe came into being some 13 odd billion years ago, as the explanations for their assertions do seem to make sense. Yet, who knows whether one day an astronomer will make an 'earth shattering' discovery which will lead to an entirely new and different idea as to how our universe came into being.
The Irreverent Mr Black, thank you for your powers of observation in relation to the bigger fonts that I used. I have indeed a vision issue but not bad enough to inhibit my ability to read smaller print.
I just noted Blue Lightning's post and agree with his comments.
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  #15  
Old 21st July 2017, 12:30 PM
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Default Re: Which label is correct?

IT, that's the thing about science: it keeps questioning, and always will.

Even "the answer" is really "the current best working hypothesis".

You may notice many of us don't capitalise "atheist", by the way.
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Old 21st July 2017, 05:26 PM
Icho Tolot Icho Tolot is offline
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Default Re: Which label is correct?

Thank you TIMB, atheist it is. As said before, I am still very new about this subject.
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  #17  
Old 21st July 2017, 05:36 PM
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Thank you TIMB, atheist it is. As said before, I am still very new about this subject.
You're in the right place.
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Atheist: n; A person to be pitied in that he is unable to believe things for which there is no evidence, and who has thus deprived himself of a convenient means of feeling superior to others.
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  #18  
Old 21st July 2017, 05:36 PM
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No problem, IT!

It's just that "bloke who doesn't believe in goddy things" is such a small part of one's life. I'm more of a friend to my dog, grower of things in the garden, reader of books, and liker of guitars, than I am a non-believer, and I don't use capitals for any of those other attributes.
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Old 21st July 2017, 06:15 PM
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Default Re: Which label is correct?

Hello IT. One of the reasons atheism gets a separate identity is that many of the people that get to the position of atheism have suffered some form of harm by religious indoctrination and support from other people who have had similar experiences can be helpful. I know that's one of the things that made me go looking for this forum.
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Old 21st July 2017, 09:17 PM
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Default Re: Which label is correct?

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Icho Tolot said View Post
Also, do you reject, for instance, the Big Bang theory? The word 'theory' says it all. This theory has not (yet) been proven.
Allow me to stop you there, if I may.

You're misrepresenting the nature of the term "theory".

It's a scientific term, especially so when dealing with something like Big Bang Theory, and so a rigorous formulation of its meaning and implications is necessary when discussing it.

Put simply, a "theory" is "the most rigorously robust explanation that we have for how some shit happened, that fits the data currently available".

Strictly speaking, it is impossible for a theory to be "proven", merely possible for it to not yet be disproven.

Quote:
So, I consider that many Atheists undoubtedly would accept the word of astronomers that the universe came into being some 13 odd billion years ago, as the explanations for their assertions do seem to make sense.
Can't speak for anyone other than myself, but I try not to take anyone's word for anything. That's the sort of shit we try to avoid, in science. (I'm not in science. I studied physics at uni, but am not a working scientist).

Quote:
Yet, who knows whether one day an astronomer will make an 'earth shattering' discovery which will lead to an entirely new and different idea as to how our universe came into being.
Ok, so we can delve a little into this.

Revolutions have happened in science. Newton's Laws of Motion were fucking astonishing, used centuries later to put men on the moon, and are fucking wrong for anything but a very restricted scale. Einstein's Relativity blew all that out of the water, except we still use Newton for most human-scale stuff because it's a good enough approximation and fuck doing the Relativity calculations for our scale. Quantum revolutionised shit several times over in various iterations.

And we know that there's stuff missing. We call them Dark Matter and Dark Energy, because sometimes scientists aren't very clued in on how naming shit matters for how its percieved by the general public.

So we know that we don't have comprehensive models, and it follows from that that no-one will be surprised when someone works out that we don't have comprehensive models. When the models themselves do come along, the surprise will be, if anything, in the nature of those models, not the fact of them.

This has been your irregularly scheduled Geoff Pretends to Still Know Physics.
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