1. Standard memberGrampy Bobby
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    17 Jan '14 21:371 edit
    "Behold, the six types of atheists"

    By Dan Merica, CNN "How many ways are there to disbelieve in God? At least six, according to a new study. Two researchers at University of Tennessee at Chattanooga found that atheists and agnostics run the range from vocally anti-religious activists to nonbelievers who still observe some religious traditions.

    “The main observation is that nonbelief is an ontologically diverse community,” write doctoral student Christopher Silver and undergraduate student Thomas Coleman. “These categories are a first stab at this," Silver told the website Raw Story. "In 30 years, we may be looking at a typology of 32 types.” Silver and Coleman derived their six types of nonbelievers from 59 interviews. We're pretty sure we've spotted all six in our comments section.

    1) Intellectual atheist/agnostic: This type of nonbeliever seeks information and intellectual stimulation about atheism. They like debating and arguing, particularly on popular Internet sites. (Ahem.) They're also well-versed in books and articles about religion and atheism, and prone to citing those works frequently.

    2) Activist: These kinds of atheists and agnostics are not content with just disbelieving in God; they want to tell others why they reject religion and why society would be better off if we all did likewise. They tend to be vocal about political causes like gay rights, feminism, the environment and the care of animals.

    3) Seeker-agnostic: This group is made up of people who are unsure about the existence of a God but keep an open mind and recognize the limits of human knowledge and experience. Silver and Coleman describe this group as people who regularly question their own beliefs and “do not hold a firm ideological position.” That doesn't mean this group is confused, the researchers say. They just embrace uncertainty.

    4) Anti-theist: This group regularly speaks out against religion and religious beliefs, usually by positioning themselves as “diametrically opposed to religious ideology,” Silver and Coleman wrote. “Anti-theists view religion as ignorance and see any individual or institution associated with it as backward and socially detrimental,” the researchers wrote. “The Anti-Theist has a clear and – in their view, superior – understanding of the limitations and danger of religions.” Anti-theists are outspoken, devoted and – at times – confrontational about their disbelief. They believe that "obvious fallacies in religion and belief should be aggressively addressed in some form or another.”

    5) Non-theist: The smallest group among the six are the non-theists, people who do not involve themselves with either religion or anti-religion. In many cases, this comes across as apathy or disinterest. “A Non-Theist simply does not concern him or herself with religion,” Silver and Coleman wrote. “Religion plays no role or issue in one’s consciousness or worldview; nor does a Non- Theist have concern for the atheist or agnostic movement.” They continue: “They simply do not believe, and in the same right, their absence of faith means the absence of anything religion in any form from their mental space.”

    6) Ritual atheist: They don't believe in God, they don’t associate with religion, and they tend to believe there is no afterlife, but the sixth type of nonbeliever still finds useful the teachings of some religious traditions. “They see these as more or less philosophical teachings of how to live life and achieve happiness than a path to transcendental liberation,” Silver and Coleman wrote. “For example, these individuals may participate in specific rituals, ceremonies, musical opportunities, meditation, yoga classes, or holiday traditions.”

    For many of these nonbelievers, their adherence to ritual may stem from family traditions. For others, its a personal connection to, or respect for, the "profound symbolism" inherent within religious rituals, beliefs and ceremonies, according the researchers." http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2013/07/15/the-six-types-of-atheists/

    Footnote: If you're an atheist, which of these six describes you; or would an additional category 7) be required?
  2. Standard memberSoothfast
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    17 Jan '14 21:50
    Originally posted by Grampy Bobby
    “These categories are a first stab at this," Silver told the website Raw Story. "In 30 years, we may be looking at a typology of 32 types.”
    Well, that should keep the Ph.D. industry churning.
  3. SubscriberProper Knob
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    17 Jan '14 21:50
    Originally posted by Grampy Bobby
    [b]"Behold, the six types of atheists"

    By Dan Merica, CNN "How many ways are there to disbelieve in God? At least six, according to a new study. Two researchers at University of Tennessee at Chattanooga found that atheists and agnostics run the range from vocally anti-religious activists to nonbelievers who still observe some religious tradition ...[text shortened]... re an atheist, which of these six describes you; or would an additional category 7) be required?[/b]
    What about if you are an atheist who keeps an open mind, but at the moment doesn't believe in God(s). Who is also well versed in the literature on atheism and likes to debate others on internet forums. Who also speaks out against ludicrous antiquated religious beliefs but who appreciates some useful religious teachings? Where would you pigeon hole that atheist?
  4. Standard memberSoothfast
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    17 Jan '14 22:01
    Originally posted by Grampy Bobby
    [b]"Behold, the six types of atheists"

    By Dan Merica, CNN "How many ways are there to disbelieve in God? At least six, according to a new study. Two researchers at University of Tennessee at Chattanooga found that atheists and agnostics run the range from vocally anti-religious activists to nonbelievers who still observe some religious tradition ...[text shortened]... re an atheist, which of these six describes you; or would an additional category 7) be required?[/b]
    As with most classification schemes that social scientists cook up, the categories are not only not mutually exclusive, they overlap markedly in almost every possible way. Arguably two of the categories could be merged to make 5, and then a Venn diagram featuring all possible overlaps would yield 2^5-1=31 "types" of atheist.

    I tend to think these kinds of studies are worthless if the goal is to understand atheism in general. I would say the same of classifications of theists, too.
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    17 Jan '14 22:09
    Some (1) and some (6) -- at least that's how I see myself.
  6. Standard memberGrampy Bobby
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    17 Jan '14 22:12
    Originally posted by Proper Knob
    What about if you are an atheist who keeps an open mind, but at the moment doesn't believe in God(s). Who is also well versed in the literature on atheism and likes to debate others on internet forums. Who also speaks out against ludicrous antiquated religious beliefs but who appreciates some useful religious teachings? Where would you pigeon hole that atheist?
    Originally posted by Proper Knob
    What about if you are an atheist who keeps an open mind, but at the moment doesn't believe in God(s). Who is also well versed in the literature on atheism and likes to debate others on internet forums. Who also speaks out against ludicrous antiquated religious beliefs but who appreciates some useful religious teachings? Where would you pigeon hole that atheist?

    For the sake of casual conversation, "would an additional category be required" to embrace these Proper Knob distinctions ?
  7. Standard memberGrampy Bobby
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    17 Jan '14 22:15
    Originally posted by Soothfast
    As with most classification schemes that social scientists cook up, the categories are not only not mutually exclusive, they overlap markedly in almost every possible way. Arguably two of the categories could be merged to make 5, and then a Venn diagram featuring all possible overlaps would yield 2^5-1=31 "types" of atheist.

    I tend to think these kin ...[text shortened]... l is to understand atheism in general. I would say the same of classifications of theists, too.
    Originally posted by Soothfast
    As with most classification schemes that social scientists cook up, the categories are not only not mutually exclusive, they overlap markedly in almost every possible way. Arguably two of the categories could be merged to make 5, and then a Venn diagram featuring all possible overlaps would yield 2^5-1=31 "types" of atheist.

    I tend to think these kinds of studies are worthless if the goal is to understand atheism in general. I would say the same of classifications of theists, too.


    Would these observations from "Spirituality Quotations" be useful?

    "Someone one day found the comedian W.C. Feild's reading the Bible and asked what he was doing. His reply was "just looking for loopholes, just looking for loopholes." There are a lot of people who read with the same intention of disregarding any evidence. After all we are so much more advance than they were 1,950 years ago when this ancient book was written.

    There are only three options to explain our existence, one is to believe in God, another is agnosticism which states their may be a God but I haven't found proof. The last is atheism where one will state they know God does not exist. This is not just a non- belief in God but a willful denial of his existence. Agnosticism is where one admits that they do not know if God exists, not having the proof or that there is a personal God who has always existed. No one is born an atheist, they learn NOT to believe, just as one learns to believe. People choose to become atheists as much as they choose to become Christians, unfortunately they usually disbelieve by default. Hopefully one becomes a Christian because of evidence."

    http://www.letusreason.org/apolo7.htm
  8. Standard memberSwissGambit
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    17 Jan '14 22:551 edit
    Originally posted by Grampy Bobby
    [b]"Behold, the six types of atheists"

    By Dan Merica, CNN "How many ways are there to disbelieve in God? At least six, according to a new study. Two researchers at University of Tennessee at Chattanooga found that atheists and agnostics run the range from vocally anti-religious activists to nonbelievers who still observe some religious tradition ...[text shortened]... re an atheist, which of these six describes you; or would an additional category 7) be required?[/b]
    I'm a 1).
  9. Standard memberGrampy Bobby
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    17 Jan '14 23:10
    Originally posted by SwissGambit
    I'm a 1).
    Originally posted by SwissGambit
    I'm a 1).

    Always refreshing when someone knows their mind.

    Note: Same topic, I've replied to your request: "Give me a source I can actually take seriously." Thread 157452 (Page 3)
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    18 Jan '14 00:39
    Originally posted by Proper Knob
    What about if you are an atheist who keeps an open mind, but at the moment doesn't believe in God(s). Who is also well versed in the literature on atheism and likes to debate others on internet forums. Who also speaks out against ludicrous antiquated religious beliefs but who appreciates some useful religious teachings? Where would you pigeon hole that atheist?
    7) Non conformist athiest.

    Can't stand to be labelled.
  11. Standard memberGrampy Bobby
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    18 Jan '14 03:20
    Originally posted by Grampy Bobby
    [b]"Behold, the six types of atheists"

    By Dan Merica, CNN "How many ways are there to disbelieve in God? At least six, according to a new study. Two researchers at University of Tennessee at Chattanooga found that atheists and agnostics run the range from vocally anti-religious activists to nonbelievers who still observe some religious tradition ...[text shortened]... re an atheist, which of these six describes you; or would an additional category 7) be required?[/b]
    1) Intellectual Atheist/Agnostic (IAA)

    The first and most frequently discussed type is what could be termed The Intellectual Atheist/Agnostic or IAA. IAA typology includes individuals who proactively seek to educate themselves through intellectual association, and proactively acquire knowledge on various topics relating to ontology (the search for Truth) and non-belief. They enjoy dialectic enterprises such as healthy democratic debate and discussions, and are intrinsically motivated to do so. These individuals are typically versed in a variety of writings on belief and non-belief and are prone to cite these authors in discussions.

    IAAs associate with fellow intellectuals regardless of the other’s ontological position as long as the IAA associate is versed and educated on various issues of science, philosophy, “rational” theology, and common socio-political religious dialog. They may enjoy discussing the epistemological positions related to the existence or non-existence of a deity. Besides using textual sources such as intellectual books, IAAs may utilize technology such as the Internet to read popular blogs, view YouTube videos, and listen to podcasts that fall in line with their particular interests. Facebook and other online social networking sites can be considered a medium for learning or discussion.

    However, not only is the IAA typically engaged in electronic forms of intellectualism but they oftentimes belong to groups that meet face to face offline such as various skeptic, rationalist and freethinking groups for similar mentally stimulating discussions and interaction. The modus operandi for the Intellectual Atheist/Agnostic is the externalization of epistemologically oriented social stimulation." Christopher F Silver (Detailed findings from the same study; 2-6 to follow)

    http://www.atheismresearch.com/
  12. Donationrwingett
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    18 Jan '14 03:28
    Originally posted by Grampy Bobby
    Originally posted by Soothfast
    [b]As with most classification schemes that social scientists cook up, the categories are not only not mutually exclusive, they overlap markedly in almost every possible way. Arguably two of the categories could be merged to make 5, and then a Venn diagram featuring all possible overlaps would yield 2^5-1=31 "type ...[text shortened]... opefully one becomes a Christian because of evidence."

    http://www.letusreason.org/apolo7.htm
    I refer you to the '12 questions to ask an Atheist' thread. You might find it enlightening.
  13. Standard memberGrampy Bobby
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    18 Jan '14 04:04
    Originally posted by rwingett
    I refer you to the '12 questions to ask an Atheist' thread. You might find it enlightening.
    Thanks, rwingett. That thread contains 156 Posts... page number would be helpful: Thread 157406
  14. Standard memberwolfgang59
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    18 Jan '14 06:22
    Any useful classification system should be exclusive and hierarchical;
    this appears to be neither. I cannot see what purpose it serves.
  15. Standard memberGrampy Bobby
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    18 Jan '14 07:16
    Originally posted by wolfgang59
    Any useful classification system should be exclusive and hierarchical;
    this appears to be neither. I cannot see what purpose it serves.
    If you're an atheist, you may wish to describe or define how your unique point of view differs from these classifications.
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