Why I Am No Longer an Atheist

Guest post by BillyBob

The word atheism is simplistic and confusing. Atheists get asked facile questions like “are you a hard or soft atheist?” or “how do you know atheism is accurate and correct?” and many variations of these questions. It is a waste of time answering that atheism is not the position that god does not exist but simply the position that there is insufficient evidence to believe a god or gods exist. Most people do not know this definition, and religious apologists ignore or misrepresent it. For this reason I am no longer an atheist; I am now an evidentialist.

My definition

evidentialist: an individual whose world view is “that which is confirmed by evidence to exist, exists; that which is not confirmed by evidence to exist does not exist”

evidentialist: will accept any material object, observable force, being or creature if there is direct evidence for its existence. Any claim of something existing that is not substantiated with evidence is deemed false.

Examples

Bigfoot is deemed not to exist as there is no confirmed evidence proving its existence. If a bigfoot were captured, it would then be deemed to exist.

Ra the sun god is deemed not to exist as there is no confirmed evidence proving its existence.

Dark matter will be accepted when scientists confirm it. That there are unexplained gravitational forces is accepted, and when experiments confirm them to be dark matter, it will be accepted.

The supernatural is deemed not to exist as there is no confirmed evidence proving its existence.

Homeopaths claim water has memory. Water memory is deemed not to exist as there is no confirmed evidence proving its existence. When a peer reviewed experiment shows water has memory, then water memory will be deemed to exist.

5 thoughts on “Why I Am No Longer an Atheist

  1. Hogwash. We are all atheists. It’s only the assertions that change.
    Most things we hear are reasonably true, so we are mostly believers as well.
    You’re probably right about that Yahweh not existing. The “God of the Armies”. That has to be bullshit.

    • Agreed. We’re all born atheist. We then get told un-verifiable fairy stories that we have to believe in under fear and coercion. As young, trusting children who can’t possibly imagine why their parents and loved ones are actually telling them lies, go along believing because apparently the parents say so.
      We get told other fairy stories that we’re told are just make-believe but no not that one particular fairy story…no sirree…that one’s true.

  2. “It is a waste of time answering that atheism is not the position that god does not exist but simply the position that there is insufficient evidence to believe a god or gods exist.”

    That’s because that answer is wrong.

    Atheism is merely a-theism, i.e. not theism. It MAY be a claim that gods definitely do not exist. OR it can be the softer claim that we have no evidence for gods. OR it can be the absence of any claim whatsoever.

    “that which is not confirmed by evidence to exist does not exist”

    This is going to be fun. What is your personal evidence for quarks? No fair if you defer this to some physicist with a lab somewhere. That’s not evidence. That’s someone you trust, talking.

    “If a bigfoot were captured”, why do you think someone would inform you of this, and prove the capture to you?

    “When a peer reviewed experiment shows water has memory” be careful what you wish for. I can construct a computer from rope. Doing the same with water is almost certainly possible. So water can have at least some memory. I think you are too loose with your terms.

    Your evidentialism is a good starting point, but it is too limited. I think a better approach would be like Thunderf00t’s PEARLism (physical evidence and rational logic) but even that must be augmented with some degree of human trust, even with what we know is a corrupt scientific community. Unfortunately, the amount of material that can be known about the world exceeds any single individual’s ability to comprehend it, much less test it.

    • If the only evidence for something existing is art, then it is bullshit. Art, in all of its forms: architecture, sculptures, paintings, poetry, fictions, songs, costumes and advertisements, are all human creations.

      If children were provided with a proper primary education they would be immune to irrational intellectual abuse by artifice.

      Adults who have a weak grasp on the distinction between mythology and history are a great plague on the Earth. Democracy becomes a dangerous process when these adults become too numerous. We’re in deep trouble, it seems, and all because our primary education has been so deeply compromised.

    • “What is your personal evidence for quarks?”

      This sounds like a creationist; were you there?

      It is reasonable to accept with reasonable reservations a
      scientific consensus.

      I was not there to watch the evolution of humans from an ape like ancestor and I do not have a deep understanding of genetics but I accept the science.

      I am trying to avoid “anything is possible” therefore anything I make up could exist. No show the me body or
      the physical manifestation indicating its existence.

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