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How do you think that atheism and materialism coincide? Do they always come together? Do you feel that your atheism is compatible with spirituality in some form?

Denker 7 July 28

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I don't necessarily know. It really depends on the person. I know some Atheists who are materialistic AF. Many are not. It is what it is and your mileage may vary.

The one that annoys me is the "low key" materialistic ones. Meaning they say they are not materialistic, and yet they are never satisfied and constantly looking for more money, things, or people to satisfy whatever it is they want. People can see right through that, stop it.


I personally don't struggle with what I believe or don't believe. For some time now I have been most comfortable using the scientific method to validate whatever I'm choosing to believe. Science does use the physical (material) world as currently accepted for observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses. I guess you might draw a correlation between unbelief in the supernatural and materialism. I don't but some people might connect my affinity for Eastern Philosophies specifically anything non-dualist which also includes Western Thought as spiritual or too woo woo.


What is spirituality if there are no spirits?

Good point. The word is not very clear, but can be taken to mean a bunch of things to do with life, death, existence beyond the natural, and so on.

I don't believe in things "beyond the natural", having never encountered any. But I am concerned about matters of life and death, morality, meaning, etc. I just consider them to be real things, not imaginary ones.


In short

a) I don't but why should they, they're separate issues.
b) No
c) No and I'm still working on what spirituality means (to me)

ipdg77 Level 8 July 28, 2018

I don't think that atheism and materialism coincide at all. I don't see what one
has to do with the other.
My atheism is not remotely compatible with any kind of spirituality, in any form.
I don't believe in spirituality.

Does that mean you believe in an evidence-based world? Because that would likely be a purely materialistic one, since the physical world is what we can gather evidence on.

@Denker Our definitions of "materialistic" are VERY different.


Before any answer can be given to the question about spirituality, we need to know what it is you mean by spirituality because the word on its own is rather ambiguous.

Spirituality was defined by CG Jung as “having to do with the numinous”, but I’d include belief in a soul, karma, an afterlife, enlightenment, a spiritual dimension to life (as per Descartes’ dualism). I hope that clarifies things.

@Denker -- Yes, it does, and thank you. Now I am able to answer.

To the first question regarding the relationship between my atheism and materialism I can only say that I use the definition of the word 'materialism' as being that of worldview. That is, the notion that everything that exists is made up of matter. I say that in this sense, atheism as I define it has nothing to do with materialism specifically. As a scientist, materialism is problematic, but acceptable. My not believing in the supernatural on any level has little to do with how I view the world other than to say that anything lying outside the range of objective reality is unacceptable until evidence exists to support it.

About atheism and its compatibility with your definition of spirituality, absolutely not, and here is why: Ruling out one form of supernatural while not discarding the rest is inconsistent. I do not believe in any form of deity, nor do I accept the existence of leprechauns, angels, ghosts, etc. That also rules out irrational thinking such as astrology, Ouija, and the plethora of superstitions.

My worldview is largely informed by evidentialism.

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