Category: Belief

Issues With Agnostic Atheism

I’m an atheist, I believe gods do not exist, though atheism is polysemous so not all atheists use it that way and I want to address a term some atheists use known as agnostic atheism. This article is the written form of the video, so, if you prefer to watch, please check the below: Agnostic atheism is a term popularised on the internet, though does have roots much older than the internet, and whilst linguistically valid, poses a number of......

Confused Claims, Contradictions and Incoherence

Confusion is rife on the internet, especially on places like Twitter where people seem more interested in “beating” the last tweet in a discussion than maintaining a coherent thought process. Many of us atheists might think these contradictions might be limited to god claims, holy books, and fundamentalists but that is far from the case. Recently I’ve had some conversations with people that whilst I might not agree with their individual statements they could be valid on their own, however,......

In Response to Daniel Goldman on Belief

Introduction Recently I encountered Daniel Goldman a couple of times on Twitter.  The first time was during a discussion about the use of the words atheism, theism, agnosticism, etc.  The conversation was pleasant enough, especially when we consider how many of those kinds of discussions go!  The second encounter was a discussion about belief, and how it is defined.  Daniel disputed the definition of belief that I presented, and a discussion about said topic ensued.  There was a lot of......

There Can Be Only ONE!

The repetitious nature of folks trying to prescribe a singular definition of atheism, and claiming that other definitions are, “talking about something else” or are “wrong”, seems to never die. What’s worse, these folks who take you saying that there are actually multiple uses of atheism claim that YOU are the one being prescriptive and restrictive, yet you’re the one saying there are multiple definitions… This article discusses some of the recent behaviours and examples of bad logic and mental......

Different Types of Not Believing & The Law of Excluded Middle

There are some people who like to oversimplify not believing a proposition. They will say things like “You either do believe or you don’t believe, there is no third option!” On the surface, this statement is correct. The problem is, it doesn’t actually fully capture the type of not believing. This is why conflations of suspending judgment and disbelief seem to appear, and other claims like, “atheism is the default position” or the dreaded “rocks are atheist” debacle. So, please......

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......

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......

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......