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Lack of belief in gods October 18, 2010

Posted by shaunphilly in religion, atheism, polyamory, culture.
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There are some times when there is just nothing to add:

Well said!

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1. george1001 - December 4, 2010

What exactly is so important about the phrase “lack of belief” anyway? I normally really enjoy Qualia Sou’s videos but this is just annoying pedantic lecturing.

2. shaunphilly - December 5, 2010

It is to make the subtle but very important distinction between “lack of belief” and “belief in lack.” In other words, it is to make sure that it is understood that we are not claiming that we believe gods don’t exist, but that when presented with such hypotheses, we don’t accept them; we lack belief in those proposed beings called ‘gods’.

Also, what’s wrong with pedantic lecturing? Why is it annoying?

3. george1001 - December 12, 2010

1. “…we are not claiming that we believe gods don’t exist.” What’s wrong with that? As an atheist, I believe that god or gods do not exist. Show me evidence for a god, and I’ll believe it, but so far all evidence I’ve seen is insufficient to support any such belief.

2. I don’t think the the expression “I lack belief” makes any sense. Is there any other context in which that phrase is used (before these contemporary atheistic arguments?). The example he gives, of people on a jury, would be better expressed as: 1. I don’t know (if defendant is guilty); 2. He may or may not be guilty; 3. I’m not sure what the truth is, etc. No one says “I lack belief that the defendant is guilty”.

3. He’s making an equivocation fallacy at 4:07, where he claims that defining atheism as a belief that no gods exist makes it a type of faith position. “Belief” =/= “Faith. This is very common among misguided athiest arguments who colloqually use the term to refer exclusively to religious beliefs. A “belief” is simply any proposition that one holds to be true.

4. What I find annoying? Not the pedantry itself, I generally appreciate his lengthy explications, It’s his tone and attitude. He’s making it into an “us vs them” argument, rather than simply an honest dialectic of conflicting ideas.


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