Monicks: Unleashed

Thinking Critically

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So, surely you’re agnostic?

That’s the reply I got to this tweet:

Sigh…

Because it does not matter how many times people explain this, or how many blogs have this topic somewhere featured, there’s always room for another Atheism vs. Agnosticism explanation. Hopefully one of these will, at some point, stick with you!

If you ask me about my religion, I will say: “None, I am an atheist.” But I won’t tell you that I’m also a Skeptic, a Humanist — a Secular Humanist, a Freethinker, a Rationalist, an Egalitarian, and also an Agnostic.

The misconception is unbelievably widespread and I have addressed it before, more than once, in different contexts and mediums. Atheism and Agnosticism are not mutually exclusive.

Let me break it down for you:

Atheism is about (lack of) belief.

Atheists The existence a god (any deity) is improbable, atheists find no reason to *believe* a god exists.

Agnosticism is about knowledge.

Agnostics: The existence or non-existence of god (or any deity) is unknown and possibly unknowable.

So in this sense we are all agnostics, because nobody can prove (yet?) the existence or nonexistence of a god, therefore nobody can *know* for sure. That, technically, makes you, by definition, an Agnostic. That’s how we get Agnostic Atheism and Agnostic Theism.

Now, if you consider yourself an agnostic, that means (to me, anyway) that your belief in the existence of a god is, to say the least, very weak so, you’re almost an atheist in my book. (◕‿~)✿

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Neil deGrasse Tyson: Sir, you have failed me.

I was so disappointed to hear this argument by Neil deGrasse Tyson, that I’m almost sorry I am posting it, but I need to talk about this. Please, watch the video — it’s less than four minutes long.

[Agnosticism] and [atheism] are not the same thing, and I’ll tell you why. Atheists I know who proudly wear the badge are active atheists, they’re like in-your-face atheists, and they want to change policies and they’re having debates…

Yes, sir. Agnosticism and Atheism are not the same thing, but the reason you are giving in your speech is painfully inaccurate, you have explained it, not only subjectively, but also very poorly.

The only accurate explanation is that Agnosticism refers to knowledge, and Atheism refers to beliefs. That’s it. An Agnostic does not know, because he or she can’t prove a god exists, everyone is an agnostic in that respect. An Atheist doesn’t believe a god exists because there is no evidence to back this claim. I am _certain_ you know this.

“Agnostic” separates me from the conduct of atheists, whether or not there is strong overlap between the categories.

No, sir, it doesn’t. “Agnostic” only describes your lack of knowledge about the god-question. Just so you know, some agnostics are activists, too.

The really disgraceful thing about all this, sir, is that you sound like you are buying into the idea that atheism is a synonym for activism, and spreading this misconception.

For the record, I like this approach of yours much better:

We have the same goals, sir. Seems to me you’re shooting yourself in the foot.

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The Think Atheist Seed Project

How sweet it is to have free web hosting!

The Think Atheist Seed Project is a service provided by The Think Atheist Foundation, to the Atheist and Agnostic blogging community to help them grow and get the word out.

So, I have moved to a new home, I thought I should let you guys know that I will be no longer updating this blog.

Those of you who have kindly subscribed to this humble feed, and still enjoy checking these posts, are more than welcome to subscribe to the new Monicks.net.

If you are an active blogger, by all means, check out the The Think Atheist Seed Project site, and see if you’re elegible for this benefit.

If you have any questions regarding The Think Atheist Seed Project rules, don’t hesitate to contact me. My contact info is right there.➙

Thank you for all your visits and comments, I hope to see you all at my new home, that is also yours. ♥

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