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Define 'atheist' and define 'agnostic'. (for believers and non-believers!)


Posted by Malph on 2011-07-15 08:33:09

Atheist- Someone who doesn't believe in a deity. The lack of Theism.

Agnostic- More complicated to describe. It's generally split into 3 types:

  • Theistic Agnostic: Believes in God, but believes He is impossible to know.
  • Atheistic Agnostic: Doesn't believe in God, but believes you can't know anyway.
  • Neutral Agnostic: Doesn't follow either belief. Basically, believes we can't know for sure whether He exists or not.

Hating God isn't atheism since it requires you to believe He exists. Hatred of God is called "Misotheism".

Being against God also means you believe in Him, but that you disagree with Him. This is called "Dystheism" or, if you disagree because you think He's evil, "Maltheism".

And, in case you're wondering, I'm Neutral Agnostic.

Posted by shaun h on 2012-07-27 15:26:32

I've posted elsewhere on this site that the term agnostic is derived from Greek, "a" meaning "non-existence of" and "gnosis" meaning "knowledge" hence a"true" agnostic is one who admits he has no knowledge of a certain phenomena or art. Using this term in a religious context is only one way to term a non-believer., or someone who admits they have no knowledge as to the existence, (or not), of a deity.

Posted by Chris Wood on 2012-10-15 18:01:26

Shaun H. You have GOTTA be a student of religion! Nobody could know as much as you do and not have some kinda religious knowledge of at least degree level! Not even my pastor knows as much as you do.