This is a horny old debate.
1. atheism – having no belief in God. Like a child before being made aware there is a God.
2. Atheism – believing there is no god.
The difference is significant but often difficult to comprehend and maintain:
2. Atheism. No-one can say there is no God especially since science abandoned its belief there was no beginning. Science does not like something from nothing so that leaves open the intelligent creator hypotheses. Asserting the is no God is therefore a belief. Hence the capital A for the proper noun use of Atheism here and a cap let is used fro all others proper noun religions.
Once a person is aware the is death, and the beef in heaven and god it very difficult to maintain the innocence of childhood. The best one can say is – I see no evidence to support the God hypothesis. For instance many scientists rejected the continental drift hypotheses by saying – I see no evidence for the hypothesis. They were proved wrong and he continental drift hypotheses moved into the realm of science fact.
Accepting the God hypotheses but seeing no evidence for it sounds like agnostic, a recently invented word used to describe those who don’t know but believe it is possible there is a God.
2. Atheism. No-one can say there is no God especially since science abandoned its belief there was no beginning. Science does not like something from nothing so that leaves open the intelligent creator hypotheses. Asserting the is no God is therefore a belief.
No I don’t think that is right at all.
The onus is on those who choose to believe that there is such an extraordinary phenomenon as God to show some reason for their belief. The default condition is disbelief. As Scott said earlier, we don’t believe that there is a silver tea set in orbit around the moon. Why would we? If someone wants us to believe that then he has to provide a convincing reason.
Scientists actually are comfortable about the universe starting from something that we would call nothing and they have a lot of very complicated math and physics to make their case. I am not really convinced because I don understand it but I believe that this could still be satisfactory evidence and the fact that I don’t understand it is my fault. There does not have to be an explanation that is simple and easy to understand. The universe is not like that.
I am inclined to believe their explanation because I know that there is no faith involved with scientists when they put forward an explanation like that. They tell me that although some of the details about what was happening in the first nanoseconds after the big bang are not all explained yet, the bulk of it is.
There is no need to invent something as unlikely as God to explain it. That is what ancient superstitious, and ignorant people did. We don’t have to be like them anymore, and there is no reason to accept any explanations that they made a long time ago from their ignorance. Occam’s raser.
I don’t even accept that asserting that there is no god is a belief. To be precise, it is the absence of a belief and therefore the direct opposite. I don’t accept either that I have to have an alternative belief to yours that God created the universe. I am content to accept that I (we) just don’t know but a lot of people who are much more educated than I am probably do know.
Intelligent design is nonsense.
Science does not like something from nothing so that leaves open the intelligent creator hypotheses.
True, in a sense. As a scientist, what we want is coherent, testable explanation of why something came from nothing. Also, most people’s understanding of “nothing” is somewhat different than mine. For instance, particles pop-in and out of existence all the time; they come almost literally from nothing. This has a measurable effect through the Casimir effect. The vacuum of space is seething with these “temporary” particles, i.e. the universe has zero point fluctuations.
The best one can say is – I see no evidence to support the God hypothesis.
As Pauli would say, it isn’t even wrong. Simply put, it has no evidence to support nor refute it. The hypotheses is not testable as envisioned. Does this mean that there is no god? No, but it also means that it doesn’t matter. All of our tests would be inconclusive. So, if everything is the same with or without a god, why do we need to consider one at all? Now you might argue about the afterlife. But, what good does it do us to focus on something that may or may not exist, especially at the expense of the world around us? We’re here now, so why don’t we work on making it better and leave heaven to the whims of some unspecified deity?
Utter nonsense. Science “leaves open” the hypothesis of an intelligent creator only in the sense that it leaves open every statement that’s not logically invalid. Science doesn’t pretend to deal in absolutes; it can only consider what’s most probable, given the evidence.
Asserting the is no God is therefore a belief.
In a mostly irrelevant, technical sense, yes. Asserting there’s no china teapot in orbit is also a belief — it’s just one that’s highly likely to be true, as is the belief that no gods exist.
Wait… there’s beef in heaven? Maybe there is a God after all.
Sorry, couldn’t resist.
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