Author: Davidian

The Problem With ‘Atheism is the Default Position’ Arguments

As an atheist, even one that doesn’t feel that in tune with many other atheists, I still want atheists to come from a position of strength. I want us to have good arguments, sound reasoning and solid logic. This is a big part of why I have the Bad atheist arguments series and the SciPhi Shortz videos and podcasts that address common misunderstandings and bad memes. Whether we like it or not, the behaviour of atheists reflects on us all.......

Belief and Action

Having discussed the definitions of belief and common misconceptions previously I felt it would be good to cover belief in a little more detail, namely how belief and non-belief inform actions. If you remember our short on belief, it was defined like this: Something accepted as true. Something thought most likely. A positive attitude towards a proposition. Something concluded is the case. For more info, check the Belief – SciPhi Shortz podcast or the YouTube Video We summarised they all......

Atheist Community?

It’s common to hear folks say things like “there is no atheist community” and “saying atheist community is like saying non-stamp collector community, I don’t see one” and on the surface this is understandable, you generally don’t see a community of non-stamp collectors or non-believers in Bigfoot, but can we say the same for atheists? What is a Community? a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common. the condition of sharing or......

Acceptance, Belief and ‘Believe in’

Too often do conversations devolve into people splitting hairs over synonymous terminology. Obviously, a synonym doesn’t mean the word holds the exact same meaning, just that holds (at least) nearly the same meaning. Some words are shorthand for phrases. Some words or phrases can be used in various ways and their meanings can cross over and be different depending on context. As Dave has said a number of times Words are funny things! That is one of the reasons I......

It Begs the Question…

Begging the question is a fallacy in which the premises of an argument assume the truth of the conclusion instead of supporting it. You may have also heard of this being called circular reasoning. The phrase begging the question originated in the 16th century as a mistranslation of the Latin petitio principii, which in turn was a mistranslation of the Greek for “assuming the conclusion”. The most common example of this we see on social media is variations of “It......

What is the Difference Between Does Not Believe and Lack of Belief?

Is there any difference between does not believe and lack of belief? The statements CAN be used interchangeably but is there any nuance to the terms? Are there times where we could use lack of belief but not does not believe? To be sure we are on the same page, we should start by defining our terms. What is a Belief? There are a few definitions of belief, but they are all essentially saying the same thing. Something accepted as......

Claims, Propositions and Attitudes

A proposition is a bivalent statement (or claim) that expresses a judgement or opinion. It is truth-apt and, therefore, can be true or false. A claim is an assertion something is true (or false). There’s is propositional content in a claim but they are not exactly the same thing, at least not always. What’s the difference between a proposition and a claim? A proposition can be presented without the assertion it is true or false. This would be for the......

Is The ‘lack of belief’ Definition of Atheism The Most Common One Used?

There are some people that like to claim the lack of belief, or absence of belief, definition of atheism is the most common one. I contest that, whilst it is common on social media due to political parties like the American Atheists and American YouTube shows like The Atheist Experience, it isn’t that common outside of the internet and certain circles in America. Ways to Discuss Atheism Atheism is polysemous. That means there are many definitions. With the way language......

The Truth of it All

What is truth? How can we know if something is true? Do all statements hold a truth value? Can we have subjective truths? When not considered too deeply, these questions seem obvious, but upon greater consideration, they are far more complex. Isn’t everything? In this article, I hope to explain truth and truth-apt statements, give a basic overview of the various theories of truth, and how truth can apply to conversations about morality, inclusive of some common issues that come......

Hitchens on Antitheism

It’s come to my attention in the last year or so, that many are conflating the classical/philosophical definition of atheism with antitheism (sometimes spelt anti-theism). Regardless of your preferred use of atheism and atheist, over the centuries and still today atheism is the belief/proposition/claim there are no gods, with the atheist accepting (believing) this is true. There are other definitions, of course, Flew famously tried changing the definition in 72 to ignore the agnostic label for a “positive atheist” –......