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Certainty in a belief seems to me a trait of a theist. Why then are my atheist comrades full of certainty as well in most cases? Not trying to argue agnosticism vs atheism I'm just curious of those with absolute certainty of their convictions in either direction.

Dionysus6 5 June 15

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If you really unpack the philosophical position of actual unbelievers I think you'll find the exact opposite of what you're alleging. We're VERY comfortable with uncertainty and willing to state what we don't know, when we don't know it, without feeling an irresistible need to make up answers we don't have.

We don't know if any deities exist or not.

We don't afford belief to the unsubstantiated, so we hold no beliefs one way or the other.

We await with an open mind, evidence that would change that equation and potentially justify us taking up a supportable belief or even knowledge position on these topics.

What looks like certitude to you perhaps is our not being even remotely impressed with the assertions and truth claims thus far presented. If you think we should be impressed then you're going to see us as closed off, biased and certain. But it is actually not a question of openness, but of evidential standards and epistemology.

Society's operant conditioning in these matters is to be SO open-minded that your brains leak out; to consider certain ridiculous ideas sancrosanct and untouchable rather than having to earn their acceptance in the marketplace of ideas on a level playing field. It therefore tends to make unwarranted assumptions about our actual positions, epistemology, and motivations, to the point of flipping them 180 degrees from what they actually are.

I see you missed my point completely. You keep using the words "we" and "our" as if i am not part of the agnostic community. I am an agnostic and i agree with what you write about uncertainty and holding no beliefs and by your own explanation you would fall into the category of agnostic but please correct me if im wrong. My question is for those who say they are atheist rather than agnostic, which for some atheists i would take to mean that they are certain no gods exist rather than saying they don't know. I have talked to some atheists who are 100% certain that there are no gods and while i tend to agree i cannot say i am 100% sure. So again my question is for those who are 100% certain.

@Gooderer OK. I'm an agnostic atheist. Agnosticism is the lack of a knowledge claim about the existence of god. Atheism is the lack of any belief about the existence of god. I think you're going to have difficulty finding very many Gnostic atheists, certainly a LOT more trouble than finding gnostic theists. But ... let's see what happens.


Atheists don't know if there is a God of the universe. Science hasn't proved it either way. Science has proven that a personal God is a creation of the minds of men. Logic and empirical evidence shows that prayer at best is only a form of meditation. God doesn't speak to people everyday and he doesn't have a plan for everyone's life.
The best policy is agnosticism because science doesn't have all the answers. Just saying.

Grecio Level 7 June 16, 2018

Based upon facts available I cannot believe that there is a god that caused creation or cares who or what I am.

Marine Level 8 June 16, 2018

I have decided that IT is a Great Mystery and humans have not solved IT. If you are comfortable in your beliefs fine and dandy. I am still open to whatever possibility is out there. I am not into dogma, no matter whose it is. This Planet lover, tree hugger thinks humans have a lot of room to evolve and be more HUMAN!


I think that there are few things we can be certain about: ourself & and the empiric fact that nothing is absolutely certain. Certainty of belief is an attitude towards belief, and attitude is a feeling and a feeling is part physical and therefore the certainty of uncertainty is not paradoxical

cava Level 7 June 16, 2018

I don't believe absolute certainty can ever be achieved....

Melany Level 5 June 15, 2018

It probably can be, but it is not very likely.


That depends. For instance, I am a scientist and I am fairly certain that in greatest number instances if the scientific process was followed as it was designed, then their is a big difference between a scientist and a technologist.

A scientist attempts to adhere to the scientific process ( I know it sounds like just another dogma , but really it's more than that. I'll get to that in a moment). A technologist on the otherrand borrows from the scientific procesd, bit has little compunction about short-cutting process for the sake of time expediency or money savings.

Back to the earlier point. Science depends upon repitit in of results, measurable outcomes, and the reliance of previous knowledge derived in the same way. It is not based solely upon fsith, which is not reproducable (once a moracle hapoens, one cannot go back and reproduce it). Faith does come into play in science. I cannot split the atom in my classroom. But I can have "fsith" that if has come to be accepted by the greater science popustion, it's probably based on sound work and data. Just sayin"

t1nick Level 8 June 15, 2018

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The certainty that bothers me about atheists (not so much agnostics) is the superior attitude of some who are smug in their "certainty" that all theists are a bunch of gullible idiots. These folks are so entrenched in their dogma of atheists being not only more intelligent than theists, but that they (the atheists) also have the high moral ground. They make blanket statements about believers that simply do not apply. If one disagrees with them, they then attack that person.

I know not all atheists are 100% certain but for those that are I feel like they are the opposite but equal of the theist who is 100% sure of their belief. The certainty is what bothers me. Like Charles Bukowski said “The problem with the world is that the intelligent people are full of doubts, while the stupid ones are full of confidence.”

Excatly, blanket statement really never apply, especially when it comes to beliefs...

@Fanburger And I say that anyone who judges an entire segment of any population is guilty of "logical" fallacies. You can say anything you like, eh?

@Melany Opposite but equal, good call

@Fanburger It is useless to carry on a conversation with a fundamentalist--regardless if that person is a Christian, an atheist, or a Nazi. The only thing that feels good about beating my head against a brick wall is stopping.

Hey @Gwendolyn2018 its like Fanburger came through just to prove your point and be an example of how there are arrogant ignorant assholes on both sides who think they know everything. If you think you know it all you really don't know a thing. Again with the Bukowski quote "The problem with the world is that the intelligent people are full of doubts, while the stupid ones are full of confidence.” that goes for theists and atheists equally ?

@Gooderer Great minds think alike, and that is exactly what I was thinking!


I would say that an Atheist is 99% sure that there is no god and 1% open to the possibility that there is one if someone would just provide hard evidence, However, since the fundamentalists are 1,000% certain in their delusion it is impractical to allow for even that 1% of doubt because the missionary zeal immediately comes out. Like any lunatic they want you to share their delusion and will stop at nothing to do it so you just can't allow them a foot in the door. If you don't believe it then the next time the Jehovahs Witnesses or the Mormons drop by and knock on your door, let them in and put on a pot of coffee so you can have a nice long chat, they'll be back, guaranteed.

Atheism, for me, all depends on definitions. Is there some super-powerful, cosmic entity? Maybe, who's to say? But if it doesn't answer prayers, work miracles, or do the other stuff that religions say it does, why call it a god? As such, I'm as close to "absolutely certain" that no "god" exists as is possible - it's not technically 100%, but I round a bit to get it there! 😉


My conviction is that I don't care and as far as I am concerned, everyone can believe what they want to believe. It's fine with me.

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