Friday, August 13, 2010

The Stupid! It Burns! (lack of belief edition)

Is Atheism Mere Lack of Belief?:
When they are told that they are as religious as theists or when they are told that atheism is itself a king of religion, they inevitably respond with the canned answer, “No atheism is not a religion or philosophy. It is simply lack of belief. You obviously don’t understand atheism!” ...

The most astounding thing about this canned answer is that it isn’t even logically viable. Babies have no logically definable belief in God, yet they are by no means atheists. ...

[W]hen an atheist claims he is being rational in claiming there is no God, or doesn’t believe in any god, he is following a self-imposed willful blindness to rationality itself, rather than the openness he claims. ...

Under atheism, all life is a mere accident of a mindless, non rational, purposeless universe. How does any non rational process create mind and rationality? To pre-empt the typical responses to this problem – such as that we have observations that confirm the reliability of our minds – I add, no you cannot test the reliability of the human mind by using the human mind. A fatal and salient contradiction occurs in the attempt!


  1. I hate it when theistic advocates use the word "accident" to describe processes such as evolution or scientific theories such as the big bang.

    But when that blogger said "Babies have no logically definable belief in God, yet there are no means atheists." - Why so oxymoronic? The baby is totally unaware of any religious concepts or the conceptual idea of God and has an absolute lack of belief. That characteristic alone means you can have appropriately label the baby an atheist.

  2. Babies are small human beings. Rocks are small. But rocks are not babies. Therefore Babies are not small human beings.

  3. Peter Sanger's entire ethical philosophy (AFAIK) rests on a version of this elementary fallacy: we eat only non-sapient animals; babies are non-sapient; we don't eat babies; therefore it is hypocritical and inconsistent to eat non-sapient animals.

  4. Damn, Gary, your comment made my eyes bleed, so I decided not to publish it.


Please pick a handle or moniker for your comment. It's much easier to address someone by a name or pseudonym than simply "hey you". I have the option of requiring a "hard" identity, but I don't want to turn that on... yet.

With few exceptions, I will not respond or reply to anonymous comments, and I may delete them. I keep a copy of all comments; if you want the text of your comment to repost with something vaguely resembling an identity, email me.

No spam, pr0n, commercial advertising, insanity, lies, repetition or off-topic comments. Creationists, Global Warming deniers, anti-vaxers, Randians, and Libertarians are automatically presumed to be idiots; Christians and Muslims might get the benefit of the doubt, if I'm in a good mood.

See the Debate Flowchart for some basic rules.

Sourced factual corrections are always published and acknowledged.

I will respond or not respond to comments as the mood takes me. See my latest comment policy for details. I am not a pseudonomous-American: my real name is Larry.

Comments may be moderated from time to time. When I do moderate comments, anonymous comments are far more likely to be rejected.

I've already answered some typical comments.

I have jqMath enabled for the blog. If you have a dollar sign (\$) in your comment, put a \\ in front of it: \\\$, unless you want to include a formula in your comment.

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.