| Going One God Further|
|Articles to not believe in|
Ateísmo es la ausencia total de creencias en la existencia de cualquier dios. La palabra viene del griego "a," significando "no," y "teísmo," significando "creencia en un dios." Éste incluye el/los Dios(es) Abrahámico(s), Júpiter, el Monstruo de Espagueti Volador, y cada otra deidad desde A a Z (y 0-9, !, £, $, o algun otro carácter, obviamente). Con este definición del ateísmo, los términos "Dios" y "un dios" se usa intercambiablemente, a causa de que no hay diferencia entre una deidad monoteística y un panteón de deidades politeísticas cuando se trata de la absoluta falta de creencia en ellas. Éste también tiene la deliberada intención de ignorar la posición que ha tenido Yahweh en la gramática inglés y en las lenguas romances.
Aunque anécdotas y estudias indican que personas que han tenido ningún acceso a cultura religiosa o influencias pueden considerar preguntas como "¿adónde venimos?", la falta de creencia en específicamente religiosas deidades, o una doctrina específicamente religiosa para acompañarlas, es el estado por defecto por cada ser humano. Mientras envejecen y obtienen más conocimientos sobre el mundo, personas pueden seguir siendo como este estado (sin creencia), convertirse en un estado de creencia, o convertirse en un creyente y regresarse (en la ausencia de suficiente evidencia de algunas entidades sobrenaturales). La posición de un ateo, por tanto, es que no está convencido que hay suficiente evidencia por la existencia de dioses; así, se puede asumir que no existen dioses y ignorarlos sin riesgos, sin miedo de fuego del infierno o rayos del relámpago. Ésta idea fue expreso la más famosamente por Bertrand Russell en su "argumento de tetera," que concluye que hay que empezar con incredulidad con algun concepto - sea una tetera interplanetaria o dios vengativo - hasta que evidencia insinúe, con éxito, diferentemente.
- 1 Ateísmo en historia
- 2 Ideas equivocadas sobre el ateísmo
- 3 ¿Por qué se convierte una persona en ateo?
- 4 Tipos del ateísmo
- 5 Tipos de argumentos por ateísmo
- 6 ¿Cuál dios se niega?
- 7 Oposición al término "ateísmo"
- 8 Opiniones religiosas del ateísmo
- 9 Opinión ateística de la Biblia
- 10 Ateísmo y intolerancia americana
- 11 ¿Por qué discutir con teístas?
- 12 Citas famosas
- 13 Demográficos
- 14 Véase también
- 15 Enlaces externos
- 16 Notas
Ateísmo en historia
History has long been riddled with those who doubt the existence of established and prominent gods. In the Western world, there have been atheists almost as long as there has been philosophy and writing. Some of the most famous men of the ancient world have been critical of belief in deities or eschewed religion entirely - many favouring logic and rationality to inform their lives and their actions, rather than religious texts. Democritus, who originally conceived of the atom, hypothesized a world without magic holding it together. Critias, one of the Thirty Tyrants of Athens, preceded Marx when he called religion a tool to control the masses. And Socrates, the founder of the system of Western thought, was accused and executed for the "crime" of teaching atheism (a charge he denied at trial, unsuccessfully).
It is not until recent history, however, that the term known as "atheism" began to carry its current connotation. In an increasing number of countries around the world it is a neutral or unimportant label. The nation of New Zealand, for example, has thrice elected an agnostic woman to be Prime Minister and several Prime Ministers of the UK have been atheists, including Clement Attlee, and at least one Australian PM was atheist. However, in more religious areas such as the United States or Saudi Arabia the term carries a heavy stigma of unpleasantness. Indeed, prejudice against atheists is so high in the United States that one study found that they are America's most distrusted minority.
The reason for such attitudes towards atheists in these nations is unclear. Firstly, there is no stated creed with which to disagree (except perhaps for "strong" atheists, whose only belief is that there are no gods). Nor are atheists generally organized into lobbies or interest groups or political action committee, at least none that wield massive power, unlike the many groups that lobby on behalf of various religions. And yet an atheist would be the least likely to win election to be President of the United States - only 49% of the American population would vote for an atheist. In contrast, no other grouping — including Mormons, African Americans, and homosexuals — would fail to get at least 79% of the potential vote based on that single trait alone. One potential reason for this is that in United States, Christian groups have managed to push and implant the concept that without religion there can be no morality - often playing to people's needs for absolutes and written rules, absolute morality is presented as something inherently true and achievable only by the religious. And, of course, no one will trust an atheist if they can be tricked into thinking that they possess no morality.
Ideas equivocadas sobre el ateísmo
The mistrust of atheism is often accompanied by snarl words, straw man arguments and various other myths and legends in order to denigrate the idea of disbelief in established gods. Some clarifications about atheism should be made clear:
Ateísmo como una religión organizada
One of the widest misconceptions, often used as a strong criticism, is that atheism is a religion, while there are secular religions, atheism is most commonly defined as "no religion". To expand the definition of "religion" to include atheism would thus destroy any use the word "religion" would have in describing anything. It is quite often pointed out that if atheism is a religion it would be akin to stating that the act of not collecting stamps is a hobby, or that being unemployed is an occupation. Following from this, atheists do not worship Charles Darwin or any other individual. Although some think that atheism requires evolution to be a complete worldview, there is no worship of anything or anyone in atheism, and acceptance of evolution isn't exclusive to atheists. By definition, if atheists worshiped Darwin as a supernatural entity, they wouldn't be atheists. This applies equally to the accusation by fundamentalists that atheists actually worship Satan.
Atheists, as a whole, are not a unified group, so accusation that "atheists" are doing x, y and z hold little water. In fact, a disaffection with organized religion, and the potential for groupthink is what causes many believers to abandon faith and come out as atheists. It doesn't follow that such individuals would happily join another organised group. Debate within the atheistic community is robust - debates even about whether there is even an "atheistic community" at all, for instance - and the fact that this debate exists presupposes no dogmatic mandate from an organized group. It does follow from this lack of organisation that there is no atheist equivalent of the Bible, Koran, or other holy text. There are, of course, atheist writings, but one does not need to adhere to opinions held by Friedrich Nietzsche, Richard Dawkins or Christopher Hitchens to be considered an atheist. Some atheists will actively oppose what these kind of authors do and say.
Opiniones fundamentalisticas del ateísmo
Fundamentalists will often denegrate atheists on the grounds that they "hate God". This, however, makes little sense. Atheists cannot deny the existence of the Christian God because they "hate God" or simply "want to live in sin" because atheists do not believe in any of these things. Thus hating god(s) makes as much sense as someone who doesn't believe in Santa Claus blaming him for not bringing any Christmas presents. In line with the varied specific beliefs of atheists in the world, some may actually wish a god did exist (but can't console this with what they observe, such as the problem of evil), some would very much dislike the god portrayed in the Bible and don't believe such a thing could exists, some simply do not care, and many will fall somewhere in between these definitions.
Morality is one of the larger issues facing the world, and religious fundamentalists believe that they have the monopoly on explaining, and deciding, moral judgments. Contrary to the claims of fundamentalists, "no gods" does not equal "no morality". There are strong humanistic, cultural, and genetic rationales for the existence of morality and ethical behaviour, and many people, not just atheists, recognize this fact.
In the US where criticism of atheism is high, it often works well for politicians and evangelists to compare atheism to the evils of communism — because anything associated with those pesky Reds has to be bad. The "evils" of communism, or even Communism, are not inextricably fused with the values of atheism in reality. Although most orthodox Marxists are atheists (Marxism treats religion as a "false consciousness" that needs to be eliminated), the atrocities wrought by Stalin and others were not on account of their being atheists, but on account of their being totalitarians and authoritarians. So it's more like that they were atheists because they were communists, not the other way around. Additionally, there have been many anti-communists who were atheists or agnostics, such as Ayn Rand and the computer pioneer John von Neumann.
Ideas equivocadas de definición
Atheism and agnosticism are not entirely mutually exclusive, and atheists are not "actually agnostic because no one can ever know whether God exists." This is a highly contested point among religious believers and atheistic philosophers alike, as most, if not all, thinking atheists would happily change their minds given the right evidence, and thus could be considered "agnostic" in this sense. However, this conflates the ideas of belief and knowledge. Atheism is a statement of a lack of belief, and not a lack of knowledge - which is often accepted on all sides of the theistic debate. Atheism takes the position that it is rational to believe that gods don't exist, based on logic and lack of evidence. Agnosticism, on the other hand, states that the lack of knowledge cannot inform the belief at all.
¿Por qué se convierte una persona en ateo?
Not all atheists are "disaffected with religion" - some were just never raised with or indoctrinated with religious beliefs in the first place. Hence a substantial number have nothing to become disaffected with. However, in areas where religious belief is essentially taken as normality, there is a high chance that a person will have been religious before coming out as an atheist. As the term "atheist" only really means something in the context of ubiquitous religious belief, being disaffected or unconvinced by religion is certainly a factor in most, if not all, people who declare themselves as an atheist. As has been said previously, there is debate in the atheist community and not all atheists would agree with all of these reasons or even consider them relevant to atheism.
One of the major intellectual issues regarding disenfranchisement with religion is the fact that most world religions posit that all other faiths are wrong. While some moderate believers may like to take a stance that "all religions are right, they're just different interpretations", it's undeniable that heresy and apostasy are looked down upon very harshly. This suggests the possibility that no religion is right, and further suggests that, because the vast majority of believers in any faith are born into it, being a member of the "correct" group or "the elect" is a mere accident of birth. There is also historical evidence that organized religion, while professing a peaceful moral code, is often the basis for exclusion and war as well as a method to motivate people in political conflicts. The enmity among different religions, and even among sects within the same religion is also an indication of this.
Other reasons may be more directly to do with a religion or its specifics - namely the evils that the concept of religion has produced over the millennia. The hypocrisy of professed believers and religious leaders; who exhort their followers to help the poor, love their neighbours and behave morally but become wealthy through donations to the church and carry love for certain neighbors to an immoral extreme. The contradiction between talk of a loving god and a world in which children starve to death and innocent people are tortured. Issues with religion may arise due to the nature of fundamentalists - insisting that their holy texts are literally true. This leads to attempts by such fundamentalists to undermine education by censoring scientific knowledge that seems to contradict their beliefs. Often this doesn't sit well with moderate believers and especially those who may be on the verge of losing any faith, especially when the evidence provided by daily experience suggesting that there are no events that cannot be explained by common sense and scientific study.
Other issues that atheists have with religion involve the characteristics of supposed gods. Atheists sometimes view the idea that a supreme all-knowing deity would have the narcissistic need to be worshipped, and would punish anyone for worshipping a different god (or none at all), to be absurd. They also may just lack a conviction in the existence of a divine being, or have a gut feeling that there isn't one - after all, if religious believers can believe based on "feeling the holy spirt", surely an atheist can do otherwise for not feeling it.
Tipos del ateísmo
There are many ways to describe different types of atheism and some of these are explained below. However, there are many similarities, all of which are included in the blanket term "atheist". In all types of atheism, natural phenomena - such as the existence of life or the very existence of the universe - aren't attributed to gods. Instead, these are usually explained through science, without resort to supernatural explanations. Morality in atheism is also not based on religious precepts such as divine commandments or revelation through a holy text - many alternative philosophies exist to derive or explain morality, such as humanism.
Ateísmo implícito vs. explícito
Implicit atheism is simply the state of not believing in any gods, simply out of a lack of considering the question. All implicit atheists are weak or pragmatic atheists.
Explicit atheism is a conscious rejection, either of the belief in gods or of their existence. Explicit atheists can be weak or strong atheists, but all strong atheists are explicit atheists.
Ateísmo débil vs. fuerte
Weak atheism (sometimes equated with "pragmatic atheism" or "negative atheism") describes the state of living as if no gods exists. It does not require an absolute statement of God's non-existence. The argument is based on the fact that as there is no evidence that gods, spatial teapots or fairies exist, we have no reason to believe in them. This argument could also be classified as extreme agnosticism, or "agnostic atheism" - as it is an acknowledgment of the lack of evidence but acting as if there were no gods.
Pragmatic atheists however are frequently reluctant to make outright statements like "Gods (or fairies) do not exist", because of the great difficulties involved in proving the absolute non-existence of anything - the idea that nothing can be proved is held in the philosophy of pyrrhonism. Consequently many pragmatic atheists would argue that the burden of proof does not lie with them to provide evidence against the extraordinary concept that gods exist. They would argue that it is up to the supporters of various religions to provide evidence for the existence of their own deities, and that no argument is necessary on the atheist's part.
Christopher Hitchens put it another way when he said: "What can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence."
Strong atheism (sometimes equated with "theoretical atheism") makes an explicit statement against the existence of gods. Often, theoretical atheism specifically combats religious beliefs and other arguments for belief in some god (or gods), such as Pascal's Wager, and argument from design because religion is seen as a distraction from work needed to solve world problems such as poverty, disease and crime.
Most theoretical atheists would disagree with pragmatic atheists about the inability to disprove the existence of gods. While gods (or fairies) cannot be absolutely proven not to exist, their existence could be provisionally described as extremely improbable.
An apatheist has no interest in accepting or denying claims that a god or gods exist or do not exist. An apatheist considers the very question of the existence or non-existence of gods or other supernatural beings to be irrelevant and not worth consideration under any circumstances.
In short: they simply don't care. (Well, OK, they care enough to give themselves a name - so that people explicitly know what it is they don't care anything about. But that's it.)
Antitheism adds to a disbelief in gods the position that any adherence to a different position — any belief in gods — is harmful or undesirable, either to the adherent or to society. As justification the antitheist will often point to the incompatibility of religion-based morality with modern humanistic values, or to the atrocities and bloodshed wrought by religion and by religious wars.
Tipos de argumentos por ateísmo
An example of a logical argument for atheism is that the existence of a god would defy the known laws of physics, demonstrated in all other aspects of the universe. The argument from design is often given as proof of a creator, but it raise the following logical question: if the world is so complex that it must have had a creator, then the creator must be at least as complex and must therefore have a creator, and this would have to have had a more complex creator ad infinitum.
While believers hasten to point out that their gods don't need to follow the known laws of physics, this is really a case of special pleading and doesn't so much prove anything itself. Atheists therefore tend to reject these arguments as they mostly beg the question of a creator's existence and, very arbitrarily, plead that a creator can be exempt from the same logic that was used to "prove" its existence.
An evidential argument for atheism would be saying that all evidence points towards there being no gods, or at least that there is no evidence pointing to there being any. Various holy books exist that testify the existence of gods but these are rejected as "evidence" as they really don't prove anything except for the fact that those books exist and people wrote them. Indeed, some of the authors and the very naturalistic origins of these books can be traced. Also, the fact that many texts of this sort exist is often considered proof against a specific creator god: if there was only one, then you'd expect only one testament, rather than several diverse ones spread across many cultures.
One important ethic stressed by many is "truthfulness", and many atheists believe that religion presents an inherent attack on truth.
Atheists sometimes ask the question:
- "Can you think of an evil act committed by a good man because of his religion?"
Examples are quite numerous, from the bloody crusades to more modern cases of priests abusing their positions in either (or both) a sexual or financial sense. . Even if religious apologists declare no true Scotsman on these examples, claiming that such people were influenced by other factors and merely used the religion as a vehicle, many cult leaders certainly commit these acts directly due to their beliefs. So the answer to this is clearly "yes" and it invites the obvious follow up question:
- "Can you think of an evil act committed by an atheist because he is an atheist?
Since some believers, who fail history forever, like to equate atheism to communism and thus link it to the deaths of millions, the answer to this is often "yes" also. But the question remains whether any of the examples were because they were atheistic. Stalin was an atheist, however, he did not set up his communist empire in the name of atheism. A popular comparison is to note that both Hitler and Stalin had moustaches, however that was certainly not what drove them to mass-murder. (Moreover, Hitler was not an atheist.) Due to this, some atheists tire of the follow-up explanation involving "dictator x was an atheist" and thus use a variation on this theme:
- "Can you think of an evil act that can only be done by a believer in the name of a religion?"
Again, several come to mind. It's then followed by:
- "Can you think of a good deed done by a believer in the name of a religion that couldn't have been done by an unbeliever?"
However, this does raise the issue of what a "good deed" is. A lot of people think Mother Teresa did nothing good and constructive in her entire life, others believe that
forcing bringing her religion to people was the "good deed". Obviously, bringing religion to someone is clearly something that can only be done by a believer.
Just as the born-again Christian "knows" that God exists, the day-to-day experience of the atheist demonstrates quite clearly that there is no supernatural being responding to human prayer and fighting against evil in the universe. The God described in the Old Testament who constantly intervened in human affairs, razing entire cities and turning people into pillars of salt for peeking, is nowhere to be found, and neither are any others.
¿Cuál dios se niega?
Tied up with some of the more awkward aspects of defining the term "atheist" is the question of what god, or type of god, is being denied. This is particularly important for those who claim that atheism is supported by evidence (more specifically, the lack of evidence for a theistic case).
If the god being denied is the interventionist God, which most theists hold to exist, then the argument against the existence of this being is easy; the lack of any demonstrable interventions demonstrates the god's lack of existence. In this case, absence of evidence is evidence of absence. However, if the god being denied is of a more non-interventionist or deist type of god, then the above argument regarding evidence doesn't work. Indeed, the only possible "evidence" for a deist god is the very existence of the universe, and most sane people don't tend to deny the universe exists. On the other hand as said "evidence" is simply asserted and isn't testable in any way, it is a lot less than wholly convincing and we return to "What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence".
Whether atheism also requires a person to disbelieve in all other forms of magic, or ghosts, or psychic powers is also a question. These are not "gods" in the conventional sense at all, but they are still supernatural entities or powers. More "hardline" atheists would insist that disbelief in all things supernatural is mandatory for the label of "atheist". They would argue that this follows from the fact that athiesm is a rational position; and that therefore atheists should take rational positions on other matters also. What does and what does not constitute a "god" in the case of atheism can often be very subjective; the definition could be restricted to monotheistic "creator" gods, or expanded to include all supernatural entities, or used to describe only things that are worshipped or idolised. The variables that arise when trying to perfectly codify "atheism" are immense, and this is fitting with its position as specifically a lack of belief.
However, atheism only makes sense in the context of the ubiquity of religion and theistic belief worldwide. If religions didn't exist, atheism wouldn't exist and any discussion of the subject would be inherently meaningless - the world doesn't feature books, internet debates and billboard campaigns saying that it's fine to disbelieve in Bertrand Russel's celestial teapot precisely because few, if any, people believe in the teapot. Therefore a working, albeit still slightly subjective, definition of what constitutes a "god" can be developed based on the beliefs of self-declared religions of the world. As a thought experiment we can conceive of a religion that achieves literal overnight success by promoting some god, Athkel, who will become a worldwide phenomenon tomorrow. An atheist would simply not believe in Athkel tomorrow, despite the fact they had no belief in him/her yesterday because it is a self defined religious deity.
Oposición al término "ateísmo"
One difficulty with the term "atheism" is that it defines what its adherents do not believe in, rather than in what they do believe in. The lack of positive statements of belief has lead to the fact that there is really no overarching organisation that speaks for atheists (some would regard this as a good thing, keeping atheism from becoming an organised religion) and has lead to the comparison that organising atheists is like "herding cats", i.e., impossible. It is possible that the only thing which does really unite atheists is a lack of belief in gods thus an overarching organisation to represent them would be physically impossible.
Primarily because of the prevalence of extreme discrimination against atheists, people have tried to come up with more positive terms or campaigns to get the goddless philosophy noticed and respected. This allows atheists to feel more united and happy with their beliefs (or lack of), but has also lead to organisations that will help them in situations, such as legal cases, where individuals couldn't do it on their own. The most prominent examples:
- The "Brights Movement" describes itself as being composed of people with a naturalistic world-view.
- Naturalist is the preferred term used by A. C. Grayling and others. Grayling argues that a statement such as "I believe in naturalistic explanations" has the advantage of being a positive statement about what is believed and also does not narrowly define the speaker in terms of one particular lack of belief.
- Freethinker is another term meaning something similar, the philosophy behind it is known as "freethought".
To date, none of these alternative descriptions seems to have taken hold a great deal and the term of choice for most people remains "atheist". "Freethinker" is probably the term with most support, as it dates back at least to the 19th Century. "Naturalism" may be the second most popular, although the name may lead people to confuse it with naturism or with some kind of eco-hippy ideal. "Bright" is the most recent term invented, and as a result is currently the most controversial and divisive. Supporters of the Brights movement see it as a positive and constructive redefinition (on par with the re-branding of homosexuality with the word "gay", which until then primarily meant "happy" or "joyous") while its detractors see it as nothing more than a shameless attempt to turn atheism into an organised religion, and the use of "bright" as a cynical attempt to appear more intellectual.
In some contexts words such as "rationalist" and "skeptic" may also be code words for "atheist". Although not all atheists need to be rationalists, and not all rationalists need to be atheists, the connection is more in the method a person uses to derive their beliefs rather than what their beliefs actually are.
Opiniones religiosas del ateísmo
The Bible, in common with other books which contain the only revealed truth, is a bit irritated with those who do not believe in either it, God, or Christianity. It includes ad hominem attacks of the type: The fool has said in his heart, "There is no God." - Psalm 14:1 (KJV)
Since the Old Testament is more or less the same as the Jewish Tanakh, the above quotation goes double, substituting Judaism for Christianity.
Opinión ateística de la Biblia
Atheists may view the Bible and other religious works as literature, mythology, epic, philosophy, agit-prop, irrelevant, history, or various combinations thereof. Many atheists see religious works as interesting historical records of the myths and beliefs of humanity. By definition atheists do not believe any religious text to be divinely inspired truth. In other words, "Dude, it's just a book" (or, in fact, a somewhat random collection of different books).
There are several types of evidence to support the idea that "it's just a book." Textual analysis of the various books of the Bible reveals vastly differing writing styles among the authors of the individual books of the Old and New Testaments, suggesting that these works represent many different (human) voices, and not a sole, divinely inspired voice. The existence of Apocrypha, writings dating from the time of Bible that were not included into official canon by Jews or Christians (and peppered with mystical events such as encounters with angels, demons, and dragons), further suggests that "divine authorship" is not a reliable claim. Within Christianity, there are even differences among sects regarding which books are Apocrypha and which are included in the Bible, or which are included under the heading "Apocrypha," indicating that they constitute holy writings but are not meant to be taken as literally as the other books. The Book of Tobit, for example, is included in the Catholic Bible but considered Apocrypha by Protestants and wholly absent from the Jewish Bible.
Another problem with the "divine authorship" of the Bible is the existence of texts that pre-date it but contain significant similarities to certain Biblical stories. The best-known among these is the flood story, found in numerous versions in texts from across the ancient Middle-East, including the Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh, which bears textual similarities with the Biblical account. Another such story with apparent Babylonian origin is that of the Tower of Babel. It has been suggested that some of these stories were appropriated by the Jews during the Babylonian Exile.
Studies of the history of the Bible, although not undertaken with the intent of disproving it (in fact, many Biblical historians set out to prove the Bible's veracity), shed light on the Bible's nature as a set of historical documents, ones which were written by humans and affected by the cultural circumstances surrounding their creation. It should be noted that this type of rational discourse neither proves nor requires an atheistic worldview: one can believe that the Bible is not the infallible word of God either because one adheres to a non-Judeo-Christian religion or because one is a Christian or Jew but not a Biblical literalist. These criticisms of Biblical "truth" serve mainly to counter the arguments of fundamentalists, who are among Atheism's most vociferous critics.
Ateísmo y intolerancia americana
Research in the American Sociological Review finds that atheists are the group that Americans least relate to for shared vision or want to have marry into their family.
|Group in Question|| This Group Does Not at All Agree with
My Vision of American Society:
| I Would Disapprove if My Child Wanted|
to Marry a Member of This Group:
|Recent Immigrant||12.5%||Not Asked|
¿Por qué discutir con teístas?
The question remains, why should an atheist be held to a theist's definitions, their rules of argumentation, and their playing field? Ultimately, atheists don't need to make a case for atheism, because the assertive (or positive) claim is being made by those who say "God exists". By the rules of logic, science, and even law, the ones making the assertion must be the ones who prove their claim, and not the other way around. Otherwise atheists would also be held accountable to make a case for being a Zeus atheist, or an Apollo atheist, or a Baal atheist; and everyone would be held accountable for being an "adragonist" or an "aunicornist" and an "adinosaurlivingwithpeopleist".
“”I don't know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered patriots. This is one nation under God.
|—George H.W. Bush|
“”We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further.
“”Yeah I know because there's no fing 'cause I can't see it. Nathan reckons there's no God, it's [religion is] bollocks innit?
“”I ... do not ... believe ... in ... God
“”We must question the story logic of having an all-knowing all-powerful God, who creates faulty Humans, and then blames them for his own mistakes.
|—Eugene Wesley Roddenberry|
“”Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?
Specific research on atheists conducted in 2006 suggests that the true proportion of atheists is 4% in the United States, 17% in Great Britain and 32% in France. A 2004 Telegraph poll found that 44% of Britons believed in a god, 35% did not, and 21% did not know.
Many studies put atheists in the higher intelligence group of the population. A recent meta-analysis of 39 eligible studies from 1927 to 2002 was published in Mensa Magazine, and concluded that atheists are more likely to be of higher intelligence than their religious counterparts. According to an article in the prestigious science journal Nature in 1998 the belief in a personal god or afterlife was very low among the members of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences. Only 7.0% believed in a personal god as compared to more than 85% of the general U.S. population. This also suggests that the more intelligent subjects are more unlikely to believe in god or supernatural powers.
A recent study published in the Annals of Family Medicine suggests that atheist doctors are more likely to care for the underserved compared to religious ones. (35% vs 31%)
- Atheist bus campaign
- Brights Movement
- Methodological naturalism
- RationalWiki Atheism FAQ for the Newly Deconverted
- Jean Meslier, a priest who wrote about being/becoming an atheist
- American Atheists and The American Humaist Society debate the existence of God
-  Some thing about some other thing - ScienceBlogs
- You want links?
- Pharyngula blogger, PZ Myers writes a gorgeous argument for the humanity of atheism
- It "really" is the symbol for American Atheists. The symbol was allegedly created for the founding of American Atheists in 1963.
- Wikipedia diff, 31st August 2009
- En realidad, es el símbolo por los atéos americanos. El símbolo fue creado por ellos en 1963.
- For most of history, nobody bothered to ask women what they thought.
- The God Delusion. Dawkins, Richard.
- Richard Dawkins, an early chapter in The Blind Watchmaker.
- See Monkey typewriter theory
- With thanks to the Fantasy Name Generator
- See quote mining
- YouGov poll
- Bell, Paul. "Would you believe it?" Mensa Magazine, UK Edition, Feb. 2002, pp. 12–13.
- Larson, Edward J.; Larry Witham (1998). "Correspondence: Leading scientists still reject god". Nature 394 (6691): 313.