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Guide to Atheism & Agnosticism

Index

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• Atheism & Agnosticism
• Atheism 101
• Agnosticism 101
• Agnosticism vs. Atheism
• Defining Atheism
• Questions About Atheism
• Advice for Atheists
• Atheism Myths
• Atheism & Society
• Attacks on Atheism
• Famous Atheists

• Site Resources
• Main Site Index

• What is Atheism?
• Religion & Theism
• Skepticism & Logic
• Arguments for / against Gods
• Evolution vs. Creationism
• Religious Timelines
• Hate Mail
• Glossary
• Book Reviews

• Chat Room
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What is atheism? Is it a religion? Are all atheists communists? What is the difference between atheism and agnosticism? Atheism is often misunderstood and even vilified; a better understanding of it, however, reveals that many of the attacks made upon atheism and atheists are based upon errors and mistaken assumptions.

Atheism and Atheists: Recent News
Curious about what has been going on with the atheism and atheists both in America and around the world? Atheism doesn't come up very often in the media, but that doesn't mean that there isn't anything to say or to report about. There are very regular stories involving atheists and atheism if you look closely.

Highlights:
•  Katharine Hepburn Dead at 96
•  Atheist Priest Regains Faith
•  Czech Republic: Most Atheist Country in Europe?
•  Atheism is Foolish and Wrong?


Atheism 101
Atheism shouldn't be a difficult concept to understand, but it does require some brief explanation as to the types of atheism that exist, whether atheism is a belief or a disbelief, and atheism's relationship with things like skepticism and reason.

Highlights:
•  What is Atheism?
•  Strong vs. Weak Atheism
•  Belief vs. Disbelief
•  Atheism vs. Agnosticism
•  Atheism & Freethought


Agnosticism 101
If there is anything as misunderstood and misrepresented as atheism, it must be agnosticism. There are many misconceptions about agnosticism, agnostics, and the reasons why anyone would adopt a position of agnosticism in the first place. This is unfortunate, because whether agnosticism is conceived of as a philosophy or simply an isolated position on the existence of gods, it is eminently reasonable and defensible.

Highlights:
•  Defining Agnosticism
•  Agnosticism Compared & Contrasted
•  Philosophy of Agnosticism


Attacks on Atheism
It isn't too hard to find people attack or criticizing atheism and atheists. There are websites devoted to it, people who write columns about it, and you can even find them in letters to the editor of many different newspapers. Very little of what you read there is justified. Occasionally, someone will make comments which fairly apply to some atheists, but it is very unusual to find attacks which fairly apply to all atheists or to atheism in general

Highlights:
•  The Irrational Atheist?
•  Atheism is Foolish and Wrong
•  Atheism and the Separation of Church and State


Defining Atheism
The broader, and more common, understanding of atheism among atheists is quite simply "not believing in any gods." No claims or denials are made - an atheist is just a person who does not happen to be a theist. Sometimes this broader understanding is called "weak" or "implicit" atheism. Most good, complete dictionaries support this.

Highlights:
•  Standard Dictionaries
•  Specialized References
•  Modern Freethinkers


Questions About Atheism
Theists often have a lot of basic questions about the nature of atheism and about atheists themselves. This resource will address questions from both atheists and theists; the commonality is that everything here deals with atheism: what atheism is, what atheism is not, what atheism is all about, what atheists believe, how atheists and theists can relate, etc.

Highlights:
•  Why are you an atheist?
•  What do Atheists Believe?
•  Aren't you just rebelling?


Advice for Atheists
People have a lot of questions about atheism and atheists, but such questions don't just come from theists. Atheists themselves have a lot of questions - not only about the nature of atheism and what other atheists think, but about how they should deal with theists, how to deal with telling others about their atheism, etc.

Highlights:
•  Atheism & Families
•  Atheism & Marriage
•  Atheism & Children


Myths and Misconceptions about Atheism
Are atheists communists? Do they hate God? Is atheism a religion? Are atheists just in denial? Do people become atheists in order to avoid admitting that they sin, or because of bad childhood experiences? These are just a few of the misconceptions people have about atheists. Read more about them and why they are not accurate.

Highlights:
•  Atheism is just another religion.
•  Atheists worship Satan.
•  Everyone worships something, so atheists must have some god.


Atheism & Society
Atheists live in many different societies, but those societies share in common the fact that most citizens believe in god(s) and are religious. How do atheists cope with theism among family, friends, and neighbors? How do atheists handle intrusions upon their religious liberty? Should atheists be politically active or should they keep quiet?

Highlights:
•  Atheism and Religious Holidays
•  Court Cases Involving Atheists
•  Godless March on Washington


Famous Atheists
Index of short biographies of famous atheists, agnostics, freethinkers, and other skeptics who have played an important role in the history of challenging and questioning traditional beliefs and religious dogma. Includes biographies of scientists, historians, philosophers, statesmen and more.

Highlights:
•  Bakunin, Mikhail
•  Dewey, John
•  Russell, Bertrand

Further Reading

Recently Reviewed Books on Atheism
Atheism is often misunderstood and sometimes reviled - but it deserves neither. There aren't a great number of books which really do a good job at explaining what it is and help people to understand what it is about.

Reviewed Books on Secularism and Humanism
What are secularism and humanism? Is it possible for a person to live without religion? Is it possible to be moral without religion? Must society have a religion in order to maintain order? Are secularism and humanism superior to traditional religions? These questions and more are addressed in the books reviewed here.



Glossary: Religion & Philosophy
This extensive glossary provides detailed information on philosophical and religious concepts, from abandonment to Zeno of Elea! (over 2400 entries total)

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