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    14 May '05 20:08
    Is is possible both to be an athesit and be agnostic at the same time? I live my life without any God and belive that there is no such thing as a higher being. At the same time I completely accept that there is absolutely no way of proving that a God-figure does (or does not) exist, and I find people who act as if they KNOW (either that there is or there isn't) to be incredibly annoying. Does anyone else share these views? Does anyone take the view from the other side of the fence i.e. is a religious agnostic?
  2. SubscriberAThousandYoung
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    14 May '05 20:13
    Originally posted by corp1131
    Is is possible both to be an athesit and be agnostic at the same time? I live my life without any God and belive that there is no such thing as a higher being. At the same time I completely accept that there is absolutely no way of proving that a God-figure does (or does not) exist, and I find people who act as if they KNOW (either that there is or there ...[text shortened]... views? Does anyone take the view from the other side of the fence i.e. is a religious agnostic?
    That's how I describe myself. It depends on how you define the words. To me, agnosticism and atheism represent values on two independent axes, one concerning knowledge about God, the other concerning religion.
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    14 May '05 21:36
    Originally posted by corp1131
    Is is possible both to be an athesit and be agnostic at the same time?
    i think it is possible. as far as i understand, it is not possible by definition to be both agnostic and theist, but it is not contradictory to be both agnostic and atheist. i consider myself agnostic, but not atheist.
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    14 May '05 22:42
    Originally posted by LemonJello
    i think it is possible. as far as i understand, it is not possible by definition to be both agnostic and theist, but it is not contradictory to be both agnostic and atheist. i consider myself agnostic, but not atheist.
    What's your position then if you are agnostic but not atheist or theist? Is that just a belief that nothing can be proved and no more than that? Or am I defining atheism wrongly in that I belive it to represent a lack of belief in a god, rather than a definite belief in no god (if you see what I mean)?
  5. DonationAcolyte
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    14 May '05 22:431 edit
    Originally posted by LemonJello
    i think it is possible. as far as i understand, it is not possible by definition to be both agnostic and theist, but it is not contradictory to be both agnostic and atheist. i consider myself agnostic, but not atheist.
    A friend of mine described himself as an agnostic theist, by which he meant: he believes in God, but doesn't see or look for any way of proving God's existence, and doesn't feel his beliefs are any more or less valid than those of someone who doesn't believe in God. So I suppose it does make sense. It's quite possible to accept your own beliefs as just that: subjective beliefs, not objective facts. I have a similar attitude to things I believe in (eg morality).

    I'd say I'm an atheist agnostic in that I don't believe anything as far as the divine is concerned, and I don't think that's likely to change, but I tend to see things from a perspective in which God doesn't really feature (a bit like Buddhism). The world around us certainly seems to have structure and beauty to it, but I don't feel the need to personify that structure, or attribute any mystical qualities to it. It's just the way things are, and can be admired/understood/whatever on its own terms, not by giving it a name, a face and a personality.

    AFAIK atheism just means 'without God', so if you live your life as if there is no God, you're an atheist, even if you can't be sure that there really is no God.
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    14 May '05 23:00
    Originally posted by corp1131
    What's your position then if you are agnostic but not atheist or theist? Is that just a belief that nothing can be proved and no more than that? Or am I defining atheism wrongly in that I belive it to represent a lack of belief in a god, rather than a definite belief in no god (if you see what I mean)?
    here is my understanding of this issue:

    the agnostic believes that the existence of god is unknown, and moreover, it is unknowable (or unprovable). this i think is a stance which can be independent of whether you are atheist or theist.

    i suppose then that you could be either atheist and agnostic or theist and agnostic, but the agnostic atheist, or the agnostic theist, would have to admit they have no proof for their respective stance.

    but i also think you could be agnostic and have no opinion whether god actually exists. that would make you agnostic, but neither theist nor atheist.

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    14 May '05 23:05
    Originally posted by Acolyte
    A friend of mine described himself as an agnostic theist, by which he meant: he believes in God, but doesn't see or look for any way of proving God's existence, and doesn't feel his beliefs are any more or less valid than those of someone who doesn't believe in God. So I suppose it does make sense. It's quite possible to accept your own beliefs ...[text shortened]... if there is no God, you're an atheist, even if you can't be sure that there really is no God.
    yes, good example....now that i think about it some more, i think i was wrong to say you cannot be both agnostic and theist...

    but in some sense, i think it makes more sense to be agnostic atheist (i believe god does not exist and you can't prove that i'm wrong) than to be agnostic theist (i believe god does exist but i can't prove i am right). at least, this is how many people see it. for example, in my collegiate dictionary, they list atheist as a synonym for agnostic. i disagree with this...

    i think whether you are agnostic or not is independent of whether you are atheist or theist.
  8. Standard memberWulebgr
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    14 May '05 23:28
    Originally posted by Acolyte
    A friend of mine described himself as an agnostic theist, by which he meant: he believes in God, but doesn't see or look for any way of proving God's existence, and doesn't feel his beliefs are any more or less valid than those of someone who doesn't believe in God. So I suppose it does make sense. It's quite possible to accept your own beliefs ...[text shortened]... if there is no God, you're an atheist, even if you can't be sure that there really is no God.
    I live my life as if there is a g-d, or at least a spiritual dimension that is crucial to life. At the same time I'm almost certain he or she is not a Christian, at least as it is practiced and preached by most modern xtians, especially in the United States, where I live.

    I call myself an agnostic, which I distinguish very clearly from atheism.

    I suspect my views have a lot in common with those of your friend.
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    15 May '05 01:03
    Could I ask another question here (seeing as my first one seems to have been pretty well answered). Is it possible to be deeply religious and yet still be agnostic? I accept that many religious people would say that it is unknowable whether a god exists, but could ,say a preist or bishop (even the Pope) have a deep belief in God whilst still maintaining this viewpoint? (after all, it is called having a faith...)
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    15 May '05 01:29
    Originally posted by corp1131
    Could I ask another question here (seeing as my first one seems to have been pretty well answered). Is it possible to be deeply religious and yet still be agnostic? I accept that many religious people would say that it is unknowable whether a god exists, but could ,say a preist or bishop (even the Pope) have a deep belief in God whilst still maintaining this viewpoint? (after all, it is called having a faith...)
    i would say the answer to you question is YES -- it is possible to be deeply religious and yet agnostic.

    i think the reason for this is because as you pointed out, being deeply religious often boils down to having deep faith, and faith is having belief in something despite the lack of evidence, or proof, for it. so i could imagine either an atheist or a theist who has a very strong belief in his or her stance on religion (based on faith), but who at the same time admits there is no real proof to back it up.
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