(A)gnostic (a)theism

(A)gnosticism deals with knowing a god exists or does not exist.
– a gnostic knows at least one god exists.
– an agnostic does not know whether or not a god exists.

(A)theism deals with believing a god exists or does not exist.
– a theist believes at least one god exists.
– an atheist does not believe any gods exist.

Gnostic theist: “I know god exists.”
Gnostic atheist: “I know gods do not exist.”
Agnostic theist: “I can’t prove it, but I believe god exists.”
Agnostic atheist: “I can’t prove it, but I do not believe gods exist.”

While nobody can truly prove gods exist, many people believe they can. These people are gnostic theists. Gnostic atheists, on the other hand, swear they can prove gods do not exist. This is not the case, however, as the supernatural cannot be disproven. Certain aspects of a particular god may or may not be provable by way of logic, but this does not prove nor disprove the possible existence of any gods.

Agnostic theists will admit they have no proof of a god’s existence, but will still adhere to the belief that one exists. There are many factors in play here, including (but not limited to) duality, a mind-body split, an attachment system, and decoupled cognition. These are all evolutionary traits that led, as a side-effect, to religious belief. Agnostic atheists will generally admit that the existence of a god or gods is a possibility, but that there is no evidence to support the belief and, as a result, will refrain from believing until sufficient evidence is presented.

Personally, I identify as an agnostic atheist. As Carl Sagan once said, “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.” Until extraordinary evidence is offered in support of the extraordinary claim that a god does exist I will remain atheist. Until extraordinary proof is offered in support of the claim that either a god exists or does not exist, I will remain agnostic.

10 thoughts on “(A)gnostic (a)theism

  1. What, then, should we call people who are just not sure whether they believe in God or not? “Theist” and “atheist” are a bit too dichotomous.

    Unfortunately, “agnostic” has come to serve to describe people who just aren’t sure whether they believe or not. But I would like for another word to gain currency that more accurately reflects this position of uncertainty:

    Ambitheist. [amb – IH – thee – ist]

    Ambi- is the Greek prefix meaning to be on both sides (as in ambivalent).

  2. Pingback: Silly Theist Logic | Atheist Dave

  3. If you tried to prove, for instance, that there is a “best shortstop of all time”, it would not be illogical to claim “there is no best shortstop of all time”. Long before you could start testing/analyzing shortstops to see which one was the best, you’d have to know concretely what “best” means. Error percentage? Batting average? Number of gold gloves? Do you include the negro leagues or minor leagues? American or National league?

    The same problem pertains to god. Four people will give five different opinions on what qualities are essential to a being that is to be called god. Most of those qualities themselves make no sense (omnibenevolent? by whose standards?) or are paradoxical (omniscience plus free will).

    Given that there is not even a standard by which something could be definitively described as a god, it is not illogical to say “there is no such thing”.


    all you sniveling pussies, with your irrational rationalizations, wearing atheism on your sleeve and you don’t even know what if fucking means. fuck you

  5. The “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence” statement is based on Hume’s argument against miracles, of course. Here is a blog posted just after yours that I just read that knocks that argument down from a mathematical perspective, and here is the deductive logic against throwing out such a statement. Both serve to point out flaws behind such a claim, so a different mantra to abide by may be necessary for you, friend.

    • So your proof is an argument from an apologetic authority? And based solely on a philosophical position that you them suggest has merit? Ha!

      Sab, I suggest that it is you whom should find a different mantra.

  6. <<<<<<<<<<<<<<< JESUS LIVES!!!!

    Note from Dave: I approved your comment, but only after I removed all the spam from it.

    • Positivity, if the man named Jesus had ever indeed existed, then he is dead; and never to be seen again.

      Do you always believe the written works of fiction?

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