Category: Scepticism

If There’s No Evidence, It Doesn’t Exist

Introduction There’s an argument that I have seen pop up a lot over the last few years from my fellow atheists and sceptics.  It’s an argument that I think needs to be addressed, for several reasons.  Among these reasons are that it shows bad epistemology, bad reasoning, and bad logic.  The argument also shows bad scepticism.  Something that I would hope that most sceptics would want to avoid.  So, what is the argument? That argument is that something does not......

Misunderstanding The Null Hypothesis and Knowledge.

The null hypothesis is used in science, and we atheists tend to have a lot of respect for science, the scientific method, scientific and empirical evidence. We think of ourselves as logical and rational people. We feel we know a lot about the topics we discuss, especially when it comes to science. In conversations with religious folks, especially many young-earth creationists, we will correct their misrepresentation and misuse of terms like evolution and scientific theory and demand they “learn the......

Scepticism, Dogma, and the Definition of Atheism

Introduction The collective moans of all those reading the title of this article can be heard.  I wouldn’t blame you for moaning either.  After all, who needs another article arguing for what the definition of atheism is?  And I would agree with that!  There are plenty of arguments out there about what the ‘true’ definition of atheism is, and why it is the ‘true’ definition of atheism.  Getting into an argument about the definition of atheism is also pretty simple. ......

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......

What’s in the Box?: A Three-Pound Rabbit

Introduction Imagine that someone presents us with a box.  That box weighs three pounds.  The person presenting us with the box says that there is a rabbit in the box, and the fact that it weighs three pounds proves that there is a rabbit in the box.  This is not the case of course, just because a box weighs three pounds does not prove that there is a rabbit in the box.  There could be some other explanation for why......

The McRae Virus

When getting involved with discussions, especially on twitter, I keep hearing the phrase ‘The McRae Virus’ – often when discussing definitions or logic. I find this a strange way to dismiss a logical argument that doesn’t fit one’s narrative. Before entering the world of internet debates and things, I thought that an atheist was someone who believed or claimed gods do not exist. When I joined the debating world on Facebook many years ago, I was ‘corrected’ by many fellow......

Ontology and the things we lack… (lacktheism or rocktheism?)

I often ask people, ‘What things are defined just by what they lack?’ – interestingly there are very few answers to this, but feel free to shoot some over and I’ll add them to the article. The reason I ask this is largely because of commonly heard, ‘atheism is only a lack of belief in gods, therefore, anything that lacks belief is an atheist’ aka conflating all forms of non-theist with atheist. This analysis may differ in various languages, and......

The Faith of Science

Introduction The sun will rise tomorrow.  This seems to be an uncontroversial statement.  The sun came up today, and the sun came up yesterday, and the day before that.  Just as it has for millions of days before that.  Gravity held today, just as it has held since the formation of the universe.  This is, again, another uncontroversial statement.  We often predict future events based on generalisations of past experiences.  It is how science works, and it is how science......

Pitfalls of ‘New Atheism’

I’m an atheist. *Gasp* ‘Hold the phone!’ Hard to believe that an atheist runs an atheist site right? I’ve even been the keyboard warrior type of atheist, although that was many years ago. I spent lots of time debating theists desperately hoping that either they could provide me with some evidence of a deity, or I could get them to see reason past their presupposition and fallacies. Over time I got bored of the conversations, there are only so many......

More on Beliefs and Justifications

Introduction One of our authors, Davidian, here at Answers in Reason recently published an excellent article discussing the burden of proof on beliefs.  The response to this article by many atheists and sceptics on Twitter was interesting to say the least.  It received an awful lot of pushback, with many arguing that Davidian did not understand what an atheist was, what atheism was, and what the burden of proof was.  The results were the same when I tried to get......