The Instigator
Vicious_Integrity
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
Korashk
Con (against)
Winning
19 Points

Is Atheism considered a religion?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/18/2010 Category: Religion
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,366 times Debate No: 11227
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (9)
Votes (3)

 

Vicious_Integrity

Pro

I will request that this goes as a souceless debate. It's purely opinion based due to an unwillingness to dive deep into certain religions. If we start bringing sources into it, I will simply not debate it any further. In personal opinion definitions are not to be considered as sources.

Now to begin: Religion is defined as a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, exp. when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.

If this is the case then, Atheism is considered to be the belief in nothing. The belief in that nothing is considered to be a belief therefore making atheism a religion.

Upon being asked what your religion is, some people reply with "I'm a Christian" while others reply with "I'm an Atheist." These words alone show that Atheism is a religion.

Vote Pro
Korashk

Con

I thank my opponent for creating this debate for this is a topic that I feel very strongly about. With that said I accept the premise of a source-less debate and my opponent's definition of religion.

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Rebuttals
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///Now to begin: Religion is defined as a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, exp. when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.///

[With this definition I believe that my opponent has won the debate for me. Using this definition Atheism does not fall under the category of religion. Atheism is not a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, or purpose of the universe. Atheism has no devotional or religious observances. Atheism does not dictate a moral code. Atheism is simply the belief that there is no supernatural power that governs the universe. That is all that Atheism is about. If Atheism itself gave some explanation of he nature of the universe than it might very well be a religion.]

///If this is the case then, Atheism is considered to be the belief in nothing. The belief in that nothing is considered to be a belief therefore making atheism a religion.///

[My opponent claims that Atheism is the belief in nothing. This is not correct, as I said above, Atheism is the belief that there is no supernatural power. There is also the alternate definition that Atheism is the disbelief in all supernatural powers which is commonly referred to as Agnostic-Atheism or Weak Atheism. I say again that neither of these beliefs is the belief in nothing.]

///Upon being asked what your religion is, some people reply with "I'm a Christian" while others reply with "I'm an Atheist." These words alone show that Atheism is a religion.///

[I do not deny that when asked the above question part of my response is, "I'm an Atheist." but I also preface this with the phrase, "I don't have a religion." While many Atheists may not say the first part out loud I am quite sure that they think it to themselves. This argument is basically just semanticizing by saying: "When I asked you what religion you are you answered 'Atheist' so Athiesm must be a religion." It is not a valid argument and I ask that my opponent drop it.

With that all said I conclude my arguments for this round and wish my opponent luck.
Debate Round No. 1
Vicious_Integrity

Pro

Vicious_Integrity forfeited this round.
Korashk

Con

That is unfortunate. I extend all of my arguments.
Debate Round No. 2
Vicious_Integrity

Pro

Vicious_Integrity forfeited this round.
Korashk

Con

I extend all of my arguments.
Debate Round No. 3
Vicious_Integrity

Pro

Vicious_Integrity forfeited this round.
Korashk

Con

I extend all of my arguments.
Debate Round No. 4
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by RoyLatham 7 years ago
RoyLatham
The common definition used by theologians, given by Wikpedia, is "A religion is a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a supernatural agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs." The definition has to encompass religions that do not have deities, like Jainism and some Buddhism, that do not have deities. There is also the modern occurrence of people who observe the cultural traditions, but who do not believe in the existence of the gods. 98% of Japanese say they are part of a religion, but two-thirds are also atheists. That makes the country both one of the most religious and least religious on earth, at the same time -- due to equivocation on "religion."

I think religious people want to claim that atheists are as dogmatic about their beliefs as they are. If true, it wouldn't justify dogmatism.
Posted by Kinesis 7 years ago
Kinesis
I think the most useful one is presented in wikipedia: 'A religion is a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature, and purpose of the universe, especially when considered as the creation of a supernatural agency or agencies, usually involving devotional and ritual observances, and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs'

Another is: 'a specific fundamental set of beliefs and practices generally agreed upon by a number of persons or sects'

Those two are the most common uses of the term: atheism fits neither.

BTW, please don't take the comment to mean that I was saying that all religious beliefs are irrational and unsupported. I was simply speculating on the possibility that the people espousing this argument are trying to level the playing field, because I can't think of another reason they would care what atheism is designated as.
Posted by Koopin 7 years ago
Koopin
Whats your definition of religion?
Posted by Kinesis 7 years ago
Kinesis
I don't even understand why religio-nuts are trying to promote this argument. Are they saying that atheism is a religion, so it must be just as irrational and unsupported as their own beliefs?
Posted by Koopin 7 years ago
Koopin
I hate when they forfeit such good topics.
Posted by RoyLatham 7 years ago
RoyLatham
Forfeiting is at minimum a conduct penalty, but I'm thinking it out to be an immediate loss. How would a face-to-face debate be scored if an opponent left the room in the middle of the debate?

The resolution is poorly worded. The "is considered a religion" is a question that could only be answer by a poll, but Pro excluded use of sources. Pro introduced his own definition of religion, and what was debated was whether atheism fits that definition. Con correctly pointed out that it does not.

Atheism can meet some definition of religion when some atheists explain nearly every ill of the world as being due to religion, but that isn't inherent in atheism. That's like people making a religion out of golf. No matter, the debate didn't go there.
Posted by Korashk 7 years ago
Korashk
I think it's really stupid that half of my debates have at least one forfeit in them. I know this isn't only a problem that I have but still; it pi**es me off.
Posted by Korashk 7 years ago
Korashk
Hahaha,

The ever popular quote, "If Atheism is a religion then not collecting stamps is a hobby."
Posted by Kinesis 7 years ago
Kinesis
Something involving stamps, collecting and hobbies comes to mind.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by Marauder 7 years ago
Marauder
Vicious_IntegrityKorashkTied
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Vote Placed by RoyLatham 7 years ago
RoyLatham
Vicious_IntegrityKorashkTied
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Vote Placed by Korashk 7 years ago
Korashk
Vicious_IntegrityKorashkTied
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Total points awarded:07