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View Full Version : Atheism is a form of dogmatism as well



ChingChang_Chow
04-19-2006, 05:25 AM
Ofcourse I am in no way saying that those who have complete faith in religion are not dogmatic either so lets analyse this. Dogmatism in this scenario can be defined as upholding your beliefs about something without having concrete evidence/ proof of that thing actually being true.

When you are blindly believing the religious scriptures or the relevant teachers, that is dogma. But when you blindly believe scientific beliefs that have not been validated or emphatically reject anything that has not been proven false, that is being Dogmatic as well. I just like a lot of people am guilty of this as well. But in the last couple of days this thought has really hit me and I am choosing to re-evaulate the beliefs I am so dogmatic about.

When I see polls on what Religion and Politics members believe its obvious that the majority is made up of Extremely religious people and atheists. In other words the majority uphold their beliefs without concrete proof. The first group blindly believes the religon and the second group blindly rejects God/supernatural. I read a thread here that agnostics are weak theists and it could be true for some but for those agnostics who actually question things, I believe that remaining agnostic would be the perfect path..

Let me again emphasize that I donot support agnosticism that believes its impossible to know wether a deity exists. Maybe agnosticism is not the right word but in my opinion the right path is to continue to question and have a desire to find out the truth for yourself (Wether or not you actually find the truth is irrelevant)

Let me end by saying - Skepticism > Dogmatism

Flat
04-19-2006, 05:47 AM
I too believe that it is bad logic to assume that absence of evidence is evidence of absence. However I am a weak athiest and believe this position is the most justified.


Edit: maybe I should elaborate.

As a weak athiest I consider agnosticism to be far too in the middle of the debate. By being a weak athiest I have merely chosen the side I consider most viable given what I currently know of the world.

Perhaps you should have stated that strong athiesm is form of dogmatism, instead of the merely athiesm.


I look forward to your response because I haven't questioned myself about this topic in ages.

ChingChang_Chow
04-19-2006, 05:53 AM
I too believe that it is bad logic to assume that absence of evidence is evidence of absence. However I am a weak athiest and believe this position is the most justified.


Edit: maybe I should elaborate.

As a weak athiest I consider agnosticism to be far too in the middle of the debate. By being a weak athiest I have merely chosen the side I consider most viable given what I currently know of the world.
Ofcourse when I said agnostic I didnt mean you have be completely impartial to either sides. You can believe something over the other as long as you donot completely reject either.

Bruzey
04-19-2006, 06:12 AM
I never thought about that. I don't think that athiests are dogmatic, but some can BECOME dogmatic if their lack of belief turns into a belief itself. I agree with what Flat said though. It really depends how you define atheism.

Is it a lack of belief in the existence of god, or is it a strong belief that there is no god?

I fall into the first category, and that isn't dogmatic at all. Dogma is defined as the assertion of unproved or unprovable principles, so it doesn't quite fit.

Quintis Vindex
04-19-2006, 06:12 AM
No.

Its not.

I wish people would stop doing this.

Ruhanv
04-19-2006, 06:15 AM
I disagree in the sense that it is not dogmatic to say that there is absolutely no chance of flying spaghetti monsters forming pink planets in space. This concept is equally ridiculous as the concept of a ghost like parental, fog-like creature having created everything.

Now if evidence is found to prove that flying spaghetti monsters or gods exists then I would be the first to change my mind (i.e. not dogmatic) but I don't see why we can't dismiss ideas which have no basis in reality or factual evidence? It should be the most natural stance to dismiss these concepts. Do biologists dismiss flying flame spewing dragons? Of course. It's not dogmatism.

ChingChang_Chow
04-19-2006, 06:15 AM
No.

Its not.

I wish people would stop doing this.
If you emphatically reject the presence of a creator God without any proof then thats dogmatism, wether you like the label or not

On the other hand if you find the idea of God to be highly improbable but are not completely closed minded then thats not dogmatism

ChingChang_Chow
04-19-2006, 06:21 AM
I disagree in the sense that it is not dogmatic to say that there is absolutely no chance of flying spaghetti monsters forming pink planets in space. This concept is equally ridiculous as the concept of a ghost like parental, fog-like creature having created everything.

Now if evidence is found to prove that flying spaghetti monsters or gods exists then I would be the first to change my mind (i.e. not dogmatic) but I don't see why we can't dismiss ideas which have no basis in reality or factual evidence? It should be the most natural stance to dismiss these concepts. Do biologists dismiss flying flame spewing dragons? Of course. It's not dogmatism.
Theoretically completely rejecting dragons is dogmatism but I get your point :D

My belief here is simply.. - You dont have any evidence that rejects the presence of the supernatural, now if you reject the possibility of supernatural things ever taking place instead of being skeptic of supernatural feats/events you are being dogmatic.

Bruzey
04-19-2006, 06:25 AM
I disagree in the sense that it is not dogmatic to say that there is absolutely no chance of flying spaghetti monsters forming pink planets in space. This concept is equally ridiculous as the concept of a ghost like parental, fog-like creature having created everything.

Now if evidence is found to prove that flying spaghetti monsters or gods exists then I would be the first to change my mind (i.e. not dogmatic) but I don't see why we can't dismiss ideas which have no basis in reality or factual evidence? It should be the most natural stance to dismiss these concepts. Do biologists dismiss flying flame spewing dragons? Of course. It's not dogmatism.

Biologists dismiss flying flame spewing dragons because they have biological basis to do so. Nobody has figured out how the earth was formed yet, and even though I'd be the first one to think that they idea of a omnipotent god is completely absurd, I still don't reject the idea because there are no facts proving otherwise.

JBDW
04-19-2006, 06:26 AM
Biologists dismiss flying flame spewing dragons because they have biological basis to do so. Nobody has figured out how the earth was formed yet, and even though I'd be the first one to think that they idea of a omnipotent god is completely absurd, I still don't reject the idea because there are no facts proving otherwise.

How are you going to prove that something doesn't exist? Especially with regards to the wholly ambiguous concept of God?

Quintis Vindex
04-19-2006, 06:28 AM
You're playing with words here;

1 a : something held as an established opinion; especially : a definite authoritative tenet b : a code of such tenets <pedagogical dogma> c : a point of view or tenet put forth as authoritative without adequate grounds
2 : a doctrine or body of doctrines concerning faith or morals formally stated and authoritatively proclaimed by a church

The primary definition of dogma is simply an established opinion; and by that holding just about any opinion can techincally be "dogmatic".

I suspect though that you are trying to apply "dogma" in its second definition to Atheism, simply to tar Atheism with some sort of religious tinge. This just isn't the case.

G T
04-19-2006, 06:34 AM
Not another of these purely academic theological debates. No doubt it will be 20 pages by tomorrow and have gotten nowhere if it hasn't degenerated into a semantics debate.

ChingChang_Chow
04-19-2006, 06:36 AM
You're playing with words here;

1 a : something held as an established opinion; especially : a definite authoritative tenet b : a code of such tenets <pedagogical dogma> c : a point of view or tenet put forth as authoritative without adequate grounds
2 : a doctrine or body of doctrines concerning faith or morals formally stated and authoritatively proclaimed by a church

The primary definition of dogma is simply an established opinion; and by that holding just about any opinion can techincally be "dogmatic".

I suspect though that you are trying to apply "dogma" in its second definition to Atheism, simply to tar Atheism with some sort of religious tinge. This just isn't the case.
In your own post " a point of view or tenet put forth as authoritative without adequate grounds"

I am not talking about Dogma in the sense of the code of conduct in religions, I simply said in the first post that Dogmatism in this scenario can be defined as upholding your beliefs about something without having concrete evidence/ proof of that thing actually being true.

Simple as that

Ruhanv
04-19-2006, 06:39 AM
Biologists dismiss flying flame spewing dragons because they have biological basis to do so. Nobody has figured out how the earth was formed yet, and even though I'd be the first one to think that they idea of a omnipotent god is completely absurd, I still don't reject the idea because there are no facts proving otherwise.

No.

They dimiss it based on the lack of physical evidence for flame spewing dragons. We dimiss the concept of a god using the exact same principles. The universe could have originates in millions of different ways, why even consider the idea that it was created by something which is not defined, nor proved?

Quintis Vindex
04-19-2006, 06:42 AM
In your own post " a point of view or tenet put forth as authoritative without adequate grounds"

I am not talking about Dogma in the sense of the code of conduct in religions, I simply said in the first post that Dogmatism in this scenario can be defined as upholding your beliefs about something without having concrete evidence/ proof of that thing actually being true.

Simple as that

How is lack of evidence inadequate grounds?

Johhny Carson was not an Alien.

Would you consider the above statement "dogmatic" because we lack absolute evidence proving he wasn't the product of Alien insemination?

Bruzey
04-19-2006, 06:53 AM
No.

They dimiss it based on the lack of physical evidence for flame spewing dragons. We dimiss the concept of a god using the exact same principles. The universe could have originates in millions of different ways, why even consider the idea that it was created by something which is not defined, nor proved?

"No."

There is a lack of physical evidence for every undiscovered species on the face of the earth, should we dismiss those too? Flame spitting dragons are dismissed because it is biologically impossible that such a creature exists, not because we haven't come across one.

Fidelis
04-19-2006, 06:58 AM
"No."

There is a lack of physical evidence for every undiscovered species on the face of the earth, should we dismiss those too? Flame spitting dragons are dismissed because it is biologically impossible that such a creature exists, not because we haven't come across one.
Well, the difference is that for the most part, we have no specific expectation of the undiscovered species. We know that there are probably many thousands or millions of them, but no one is describing these species in detail without some sort of physical evidence to give them an idea of what they might be looking for. It is not unreasonable to expect to find more undiscovered species because we have only explored so much of the extremely densely populated rain forests and the vastness of the ocean.

That is much, much different than talking about God. It's really not relevant to this discussion.

Bruzey
04-19-2006, 07:02 AM
Yeah. This is why I stay away from this entire forum, nothing gets accomplished.

Quintis Vindex
04-19-2006, 07:07 AM
Yeah. This is why I stay away from this entire forum, nothing gets accomplished.

Things are supposed to be accomplished here? :)

In that case gentlemen I say we get cracking on this Israeli-Palestinian thing with all haste.

Fidelis
04-19-2006, 07:11 AM
Yeah. This is why I stay away from this entire forum, nothing gets accomplished.
Well, there might be someone who's reading but not posting who now believes that atheism is a form of dogmatism or (hopefully) vice versa. This is a debate and discussion forum, not a "let's get **** accomplished" forum.

ChingChang_Chow
04-19-2006, 07:18 AM
How is lack of evidence inadequate grounds?

Johhny Carson was not an Alien.

Would you consider the above statement "dogmatic" because we lack absolute evidence proving he wasn't the product of Alien insemination?
Ok, lets take the example you gave

In the case of Johnny Carson there might probably be a lot of evidence if not solid proof ( or evidence can be obtained with relative ease) that he is not an alien.

In the case of GOD What evidence do you have AGAINST the existence of such a being? You probably dont have much evidence supporting the existence of God but I dont think you have much evidence against the existence either. Dogmatism in the example you gave and Dogmatism in Strong Atheism are quite different things.

Quintis Vindex
04-19-2006, 07:32 AM
Ok, lets take the example you gave

In the case of Johnny Carson there might probably be a lot of evidence if not solid proof ( or evidence can be obtained with relative ease) that he is not an alien.

In the case of GOD What evidence do you have AGAINST the existence of such a being? You probably dont have much evidence supporting the existence of God but I dont think you have much evidence against the existence either. Dogmatism in the example you gave and Dogmatism in Strong Atheism are quite different things.

Take God and replace it with Johnny Carson being an Alien. Take Johnny Carson being an Alien and replace it with God.

Notice its just a difference of proper nouns?

What solid Proof do you have AGAINST Johhny Carson being an Alien? The absence of evidence supporting a positive assertion IS evidence supporting the rejection of a positive assertion.

The absence of Theists being able to provide evidence of their God IS my evidence.

Not nearly as complicated as it sounds.

ChingChang_Chow
04-19-2006, 07:52 AM
Take God and replace it with Johnny Carson being an Alien. Take Johnny Carson being an Alien and replace it with God.

Notice its just a difference of proper nouns?

What solid Proof do you have AGAINST Johhny Carson being an Alien? The absence of evidence supporting a positive assertion IS evidence supporting the rejection of a positive assertion.

The absence of Theists being able to provide evidence of their God IS my evidence.

Not nearly as complicated as it sounds.
Thats simply your opinion. As one of the posters said, absence of evidence can never be considered evidence of absence. Think about a man being born blind and never having seen the light, people will continue to tell him about "vision" yet he will never understand it mainly because to him there is no real evidence of such thing other than a few people telling him about it. I am not saying a Creator God exists nor am I saying He/She/It does not exist. I am simply saying that just because no logical evidence exists to support the belief does not necessarily mean that the thing does not exist at all.

coontang
04-19-2006, 09:33 AM
I don't believe that God doesn't exist, I believe that your IDEA or version of God doesn't exist; which I can prove with logic and believe without being dogmatic.
There's a difference.

Entz
04-19-2006, 11:09 AM
From the original poster I understood that we should all be agnostic then? Well you can't be agnostic about things like this. I compare God to the existence of leprechauns. There is not sufficient data to prove it.