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What is a deistic atheist?
Posted: 09 January 2009 12:55 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 76 ]  
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Carstonio - 07 January 2009 08:44 AM
Immediate Suppression - 07 January 2009 05:12 AM

People have reacted against it, and some of them have chosen to label themselves atheists, but only in that they are atheistic; opposed to religion.  That is how they interpret the word, and justifiably so based upon the broader wikipedia definition mentioned earlier.

Despite their intentions, they are using the word incorrectly, and so is Wikipedia.

Do you agree with me that deistic atheists do exist, according to the polls, and can justifiably be called deistic atheists, when going by the definition on Wikipedia?

Wikipedia the free encyclopedia
Atheism, as an explicit position, can be either the affirmation of the nonexistence of gods,[1] or the rejection of theism.[2] It is also[3] defined more broadly as an absence of belief in deities, or nontheism.[4]

And would you also agree that their existence is not negative in any way, especially in comparison to religion, if we are talking about deism as defined by wikipedia?

Wikipedia the free encyclopedia
Deism is the belief that a supreme natural God exists and created the physical universe, and that religious truths can be arrived at by the application of reason and observation of the natural world. Deists generally reject the notion of supernatural revelation as a basis of truth or religious dogma. These views contrast with the dependence on divine revelation found in many Christian[1], Islamic and Judaic teachings.

Deists typically reject most supernatural events (prophecy, miracles) and tend to assert that God (or “The Supreme Architect”) has a plan for the universe which he does not alter either by intervening in the affairs of human life or suspending the natural laws of the universe. What organized religions see as divine revelation and holy books, most deists see as interpretations made by other humans, rather than as authoritative sources.

I wonder if it might even be a good thing to have deistic atheists under the atheist umbrella?  What do atheists think about that?  More atheists?

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Posted: 09 January 2009 06:15 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 77 ]  
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Immediate Suppression - 09 January 2009 05:55 AM

Do you agree with me that deistic atheists do exist, according to the polls, and can justifiably be called deistic atheists, when going by the definition on Wikipedia?

Such people may indeed exist, but that term is incorrect. When someone rejects religion but still holds onto god-belief, it is incorrect to call such a person a “deist atheist.” That’s because such a person may subscribe to a personal form of theism, as opposed to an organized one.

Immediate Suppression - 09 January 2009 05:55 AM

And would you also agree that their existence is not negative in any way, especially in comparison to religion, if we are talking about deism as defined by wikipedia?

I would say that their existence is much less negative since their beliefs don’t involve authoritarian absolutism. But deism still goes against the principles of empirical science since it’s not backed up by evidence.

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Posted: 10 January 2009 07:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 78 ]  
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Immodium Suppository - 09 January 2009 05:55 AM

And would you also agree that their existence is not negative in any way, especially in comparison to religion, if we are talking about deism as defined by wikipedia?

Here’s a question for a “deistic atheist”, then. Why be opposed to religion if you still believe in some form of higher power or afterlife or non-material existence after death? After all, if there’s an afterlife and/or deity, is there a difference between what happens after death to conventional theists, deistic atheists, and the usual kind of atheist who believes in neither concept? I mean, if there’s an afterlife, the annoyance of religion in this life is at worst a brief and minor one. Why be opposed to religion if there’s an afterlife? To a deistic atheist, a conventional biological lifetime is still negligible compared to the eternity of the afterlife. Perhaps you need to flesh out your non-theology a little better.

There just doesn’t seem to be much motivation to join a political movement that is simply against organized religion while believing in an afterlife. The negative effects of superstitious beliefs in disembodied consciousness or unspecified “higher powers” will make you ineffective as a citizen in a rational, non-religious, non-superstitious society. But a rational society is not something you want, is it, Immodium?

Immodium Suppository - 06 January 2009 07:07 AM

Most deistic atheists likely are former religious people who have abandoned religion and embraced atheism.  But they likely have difficulty abandoning their deistic tendencies, for whatever reasons.  They possibly retain them as some type of internal comfort, as I mentioned above.  They have let go of the religion, but still cling to some of the deistic aspects of it.  Many deistic atheists also probably eventually become traditional atheists over time and abandon their deistic tendencies.

The picture becomes clearer. You are either ready to abandon religion and superstition or you’re not. “Embracing atheism” differs from a political attitude against organized religion is fine. You can do everything a typical “non-deistic atheist” (or to use your term, “fundamentalist atheist”) does in the political arena, though your motivation is not clear. But if you want to join an online community of atheists for fun and chat, be prepared to have some people make fun of your absurd beliefs about disembodied consciousness and afterlife. In exchange you can call them names like “fundamentalist atheist”. If you were really clever, you could find something about “fundamentalist atheism” to criticize intellectually. Calling it “dogmatic” is just a reactionary response to having us make fun of what you make out of the chill you get down your spine.

If your main motivation in opposing conventional religion is to gain a franchise for your “disembodied consciousness” ideas, you are really just a feeble-minded superstitious individual masquerading as a “deistic atheist”, and not sincere about the quest to give up superstitious nonsense.

[ Edited: 10 January 2009 08:04 AM by Eaton Shirdlu]
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Posted: 11 January 2009 08:47 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 79 ]  
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Carstonio - 09 January 2009 11:15 AM
Immediate Suppression - 09 January 2009 05:55 AM

Do you agree with me that deistic atheists do exist, according to the polls, and can justifiably be called deistic atheists, when going by the definition on Wikipedia?

Such people may indeed exist, but that term is incorrect. When someone rejects religion but still holds onto god-belief, it is incorrect to call such a person a “deist atheist.” That’s because such a person may subscribe to a personal form of theism, as opposed to an organized one.

You say they may subscribe to a personal form of theim.  But some of these people who call themselves athieists also do not.  And they are deistic atheists, using the word atheist in the way in which Wikipedia defines it: “rejection of theism.”  It probably is a small minority of people who accurately fit into the description of deistic atheists.

Immediate Suppression - 09 January 2009 05:55 AM

And would you also agree that their existence is not negative in any way, especially in comparison to religion, if we are talking about deism as defined by wikipedia?

Carstonio - 09 January 2009 11:15 AM

I would say that their existence is much less negative since their beliefs don’t involve authoritarian absolutism. But deism still goes against the principles of empirical science since it’s not backed up by evidence.

True.

[ Edited: 11 January 2009 08:49 AM by Immediate Suppression]
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Posted: 11 January 2009 12:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 80 ]  
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Immediate Suppression - 11 January 2009 01:47 PM

You say they may subscribe to a personal form of theim.  But some of these people who call themselves athieists also do not.  And they are deistic atheists, using the word atheist in the way in which Wikipedia defines it: “rejection of theism.”  It probably is a small minority of people who accurately fit into the description of deistic atheists.

Regardless of what Wikipedia says, and regardless of the narrow etymology of the word atheism, in practice the atheism concept includes adeism. Deism itself involves a rejection of theist beliefs, so using the term “deist atheist” is not only misleading but redundant. Similarly, theism involves a rejection of deist beliefs, so it wouldn’t make sense to call someone a “theist adeist.”

[ Edited: 12 January 2009 05:57 AM by Carstonio]
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